Pope in a mosque

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Comments

  • I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss the apostolic in-your-face method of preaching as "incompatible with our times." It was no less compatible with their times. They were just as unwelcome in pagan temples and Jewish synagogues as we would be in a mosque today. They weren't killed for no reason. They were obnoxious, invasive, and gave no care for political acumen. It was just as ridiculous then as it would be now. Difference is; they didn't care.

    In the spirit of honesty, and not of judgment, the apostles would never have set foot into a gathering of any non-believers without making a bigger scene than a vegan in a meat market. Of 72 apostles, 71 were so obnoxious that they were killed, and also resulted in the murder and martyrdom of hundreds of thousands of other believers.

    We should at least be realistic in our comparisons. Good or bad decision aside, it is not a change in times that we are dealing with.

    RO

  • edited January 12
    @ReturnOrthodoxy

    I agree mostly with what you said...but here the discrepancy, the understanding of Christianity and the faith of all non-orthodox is mostly very strong. Most of them do want you to go to their churches/meetings/masses and challenge them and talk and argue. Because as much as you want to bring them to the orthodox way, they want and believe they’ll get you to the “correct faith.” I think that’s one very important difference between unbelievers then and non-orthodox now.
  • Hi @ReturnOrthodoxy,
    I can't agree more with what you said. I actually think people of this age are more stubborn and hard to convince. I have one question though, what do you mean saying 71 were obnoxious? Are you describing the people who persecuted the apostles?
    Ⲟⲩϫⲁⲓ ϧⲉⲛ Ⲡϭⲥ
  • What about Pope Shenouda???? Has he not enter a mosque too??? One of our greatest teachers and leaders considered a saint today has entered a mosque. There is nothing wrong with that at all. DONT GET CONFUSED and mix POLITICS and RELIGION today. If you know anything from our church its that to be of PEACE iwth your neigbors or enemysAlll he did was accept an invation with the same respect they visted our new church opening.

    “Live then in peace, you will be comforted and live in confidence and calm, in good health, both spiritually and physically.” - Pope Shenouda III
  • Hi @Minaeskander,
    I actually have no idea if pope Shenouda had entered a mosque, but if he did then he had also transgressed. It's interesting you said not to confuse politics with religion and that's the whole point of my post. Politics is being used by the evil one to muddle up our principles. We can't expect to see clergy people in a night club in the name of loving our neighbours. Let's be careful that we are in the last days and the evil one will cause the chosen ones to go astray (please let's pay heed). The church also teaches us that before the second coming apostasy will take hold of the church (the church will let go of her teachings), I see this already happening.. Ϣⲗⲏⲗ ⲉϩⲣⲏⲓ ⲉϫⲱⲓ ⲛⲉⲙ ⲧⲁⲥϩⲓⲙⲓ
    Ⲟⲩϫⲁⲓ ϧⲉⲛ Ⲡϭⲥ
  • edited January 18
    Hello @ophadece

    First of all, I want to thank you for starting this discussion, it has benefitted me and many others very much. I agree with you that the Apostles went to other places of worship to evangelize and not for politics of course, but that was in the Old Testament. In the New Testament and specifically for us, Coptic Orthodox, we do not attend other mosques, temples, etc because we are not partaking in their teachings or prayers because we believe in something else and we will never betray our faith for another. The case with the Pope, I believe, is a different scenario, I really appreciate your zeal for our faith and our Church but God has also commanded us to love our neighbors as our selves, He also commanded us to love our enemies and to pray for those who persecute us so if we will consider Muslims as our enemies and our persecutors then we should love them and the Pope was only doing that by answering the request for his invitation to their mosque. I believe he did not stop to think about the difference between a Muslim and a Christian but he was only answering God's commandment and serving as an example to them. If Muslims cannot be brought to the faith with words, they will be brought by actions. Since they have persecuted the Christians since they have conquered Egypt, they know that according to our human nature, no matter how many treaties of peace they can form, we will be angry with them and never accept them and hate them but by the Pope accepting the invitation he is not answering the language of the world but of God and he is responding to the hate they had for us for years and still have with Heaven's language of love and that action may have brought Muslims to our Lord and Savior which is another type of evangelism. I really appreciated your verses which you cited but I believe God was speaking about taking part of their teachings and mixing with them, but the Pope or we as Christians do not mix but still stand close enough with non-believers for them to relate to but we are also not disgracing our faith. As St. Paul said in  1 Corinthians chapter 9, "For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, that I might win the more. 20 And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law, though not being myself under the Law, that I might win those who are under the Law; 21 to those who are without law, as without law, though not being without the law of God but under the law of Christ, that I might win those who are without law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak; I have become all things to all men, that I may by all means save some. 23 And I do all things for the sake of the gospel, that I may become a fellow partaker of it." He also said "Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 32) Give no offense either to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God; [in other words, adapt as much as you can in non-sinful ways] 33) just as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit, but the profit of the many, that they may be saved. [That's the same as 9:22, "I have become all things to all men, that I may, by all means, save some." I did research this for the exact verses. I am no expert but I believe that St. Paul is speaking to us that for the sake of the Gospel and not going against it, we can go to the level of the outsiders to win them in Christ and this goes back to having different actions and of course not partaking in their teachings and straying from our own but by going to their understanding and the level they converse with and speaking to them in this language and God gives us grace for them to understand our words and glorify God. 
    Your last post where you mentioned "We can't expect to see clergy people in a night club in the name of loving our neighbors" I believe had actually occurred in the history of our church many times. One such time is with Saint John the Dwarf from Scetis with Paisa who became later a saint because of his loving action that he went to awake her of her sin, she was working in something equivalent to a night club ( I am sure you know the whole story better than I do) but his monasticism did not refrain from him visiting this evil place for the light that was at the end of the darkness, he looked on what is beyond and not what he has to go through, reflecting Christ's image. Another such time was with Bishop Anba Serapamon of Menofiah where he had to go to an unclean house to restore a woman to her husband, by his virtuous act, reflecting Christ's image he was able to not only restore the woman to her husband and establish peace (Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called sons of God) but also one of the people who worked in this evil house met him later and thought to make a scene out of him but with God's grace he was able to conquer the evil within her and she later believed in the Lord Jesus. With these Saints' faith, humility, and zeal they looked at the light at the end of the darkness and with God's power walked in the road keeping steadfast in their faith and not in the lust of the world or the temptations of the devil and by their actions and not verbal evangelism, they restored many to the faith in Christ Jesus our Lord. Of course this not the norm for believers or Popes to do but when it deems itself necessary for the saving of souls by showing our love then it is out of wisdom to act in a certain way, and of course under the guidance of God. Forgive me for this lengthy comment, God bless and increase your zeal in the faith and in the Church. 
  • Hi @msmekhael,
    Thank you very much for your post. I will thoroughly reply to all your points later, I hope by the weekend, or if not, right after. Have a blessed Theophany feast..
    Ⲟⲩϫⲁⲓ ϧⲉⲛ Ⲡϭⲥ
  • Hello @ophadece,
    Sure, I will be waiting for them. Thank you. Have a blessed Theophany Feast as well!
  • edited January 24
    Bingo! I think the same... Unpalatable truth is it not! Re 'its politics'
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