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Articles - 2015

Mgr. Jeanbart

Syrian Christians are Caught between civil war and Islamist terrorism

The last four years have been a nightmare for Syria and all his people: war, famine, destruction, hatred. The Christian minority in particular is risking to literally disappear from that land. The Melkite Archbishop of Aleppo explains the position of the bishops before and during the war, and urges the West to stop Isis and to rebuild peace, a necessary condition for recovery.

11/06/2015 | Jean-Clément Jeanbart | Eastern Christians
Sister Diana Momeka

“I implore you: help us return to our lives”

The testimony and the call for help by a Dominican nun in Mosul: how the Christian communities in the plain of Nineveh have been victims of Isis’ terrorist violence, the “infidels” have been expelled from their homes, a systematic genocide of Christians is being carried out and an artistic and historical heritage is being destroyed.

11/06/2015 | Sister Diana Momeka | Eastern Christians
Iranian Christians attending mass service

Christians in Iran

A brief description

11/06/2015 | Christians in the Muslim world
Mons. Ignazio Bedini

Christians in Iran are like flowers in the desert

Monsignor Ignazio Bedini, Bishop of Isfahan of the Latins from December 1989 to January 2015, with the memory of the more than fifty years at the service of the Latin Catholic Church in Iran, describes the awareness gained of the meaning of “Christian presence” in that country.

11/06/2015 | Marialaura Conte | Christians in the Muslim world

Free, therefore Intolerable. Away with the Christians in Iraq!

Mosul’s falling into the Caliph’s vicelike grip has been only the most recent black page in the history of Christian persecution in Iraq. Beginning about a century ago, the exodus of Christians has reached a point of no return. The unsustainable number of refugees and their individual stories so full of absurd pain but also the will to start again, are evidence of a process that is changing the Middle East’s “ecosystem,” now at the mercy of nihilistic forms of sectarianism. With repercussions for the West, as well.

09/06/2015 | Marialaura Conte | Christians in the Muslim world

Millennia of Christian architecture in Iraq destructed

Since 1996 about 72 Christian churches and institutions in Iraq have been affected by the total destruction or desecration at the hands of violent groups of which Isis is just the latest episode in a chronological sense. The systematic destruction of the architectural and artistic memory of cities like Mosul, to name just one of the affected places, is part of a violent plan of eradication of Christians from the Middle East.

12/05/2015 | Erica C.D. Hunter | Christians in the Muslim world
ISIS journal Dabiq

Why is ISIS’ magazine called Dabiq

There are hundreds of thousands of Islamic traditions, but one of them has recently come to the fore because of Isis: the one that places the final battle between the forces of good and evil in the Syrian town of Dabiq. What does this hadîth say, what is its context and why has Isis decided to appropriate it for itself?

11/05/2015 | Martino Diez | Jihadism and violence
Children enrolled in ISIS' army

Sharia law does not call for child soldiers

It appears that at least 400 children have been recruited by Isis as child soldiers for the Caliphate. The recruitment happens through violence or with the consent of families, too poor to oppose. However, a quick review of Islamic norms documents that this practice is also against Islamic law, on which the Caliphate itself stands.

11/05/2015 | Chiara Pellegrino | Religions and the public sphere

The Christian-Muslim Symbiosis of Mosul Now Coming to an End

Christianity in Mosul dates to the time of the Apostles. Initially, the faith was centered on the side of the Tigris opposite present day Mosul, in the ruins of the famed Assyrian capital Nineveh. In the first centuries of our era, a ‘diocese of Nineveh’ is attested in the synodical proceedings of the Church of the Eas...

13/04/2015 | Amir Harrak* | Eastern Christians

The Humble Attempt to Construct Peace

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08/04/2015 | Angelo Scola | Religions and the public sphere

A Temptation and a Hypothesis

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08/04/2015 | Martino Diez | Religions and the public sphere

The Christian “No” to Religious Violence: a Kairos for All Men?

If instances of religious conflict have fuelled the prejudice that monotheism is a factor for violence, the journey made by Christianity – which contemplates the innocent Son of God dying on the Cross – emphasises its irreversible leave-taking of violence committed in the name of God. This is a point for comparison in interreligious dialogue, too.

08/04/2015 | Javier Maria Prades López | Religions and the public sphere

From Witch-hunts to The Crucified Christ

René Girard’s mimetic theory offers a fundamental aid to understanding the nexus between violence, the sacred and the origin of different human cultures. It also paves the way for a challenge: how to found a way of living together without identifying a common enemy?

08/04/2015 | Bernard Perret | Religions and the public sphere

The ‘Mad’ Vocation of Christians in the Muslim World

Disciples of the crucified Christ. The new violence endured by the Christians of Iraq compels a dual observation: if it is the duty of the international community to defend their survival, it is also true that the power of the witness of Christians lies above all else in their vulnerability.

08/04/2015 | Jean-Jacques Pérennès | Christians in the Muslim world

Sunni Jihad: from a Defensive Obligation to an Instrument of Expansion

A vast repertoire of sources allows an understanding of the historical transformation of a defensive war into a warlike undertaking with imperialistic aims. A reading that challenges the extremist literature of militant Islamist groups and anti-Islamic groups.

08/04/2015 | Asma Afsaruddin | Religions and the public sphere

Shi‘ite Jihad: A Ceasefire until the Imam’s Return

Military jihad has taken its leave of history, to return only at its end and make the spirit of the Revelation triumph. And yet it is a battle that has already begun for all men: a spiritual struggle against the carnal soul’s inclinations. Some people want to precipitate the last battle, however.

08/04/2015 | Mathieu Terrier | Religions and the public sphere

The Diabolical Appeal of ISIS

The appearance of the Islamic State, which followed the season of al-Qa’ida, has confirmed the contagious character of a grave illness – extremism in the name of God. The atrocities committed by the Caliphate attract some groups of young Muslims but run the risk of leading religion to collapse.

08/04/2015 | Ridwan Al-Sayyid | Religions and the public sphere

Boko Haram and Innocent Blood: Who is to Blame?

The Nigerian terrorist movement has its roots in the 1970s when Islamic preaching against all Western influences became widespread. It adopted violent action to the point of the murderous tendency of today for various reasons, not least the corruption and the incapacity of those who were in power.

08/04/2015 | Matthew Hassan Kukah | Christians in the Muslim world

The Shifting Fortunes of Jihad in Sahel

Sahel offers fertile terrain for the birth of various groups of jihadists who thanks to the widespread poverty and porous frontiers easily recruit fighters. But new preachers and Muslim movements have also emerged which, between collusion with terrorists and democratic ideals, are determining the future of this region.

08/04/2015 | Alex Thurston | Christians in the Muslim world

The Copts and the Exit from the Communalist Ghetto

From discrimination to participation. The Egyptian case demonstrates how, in a Arab-Islamic world that is in marked trouble, the involvement of Christians in political and social life is possible only through the rule of law and institutions that are not determined by confessional ties.

08/04/2015 | Christian Cannuyer | Christians in the Muslim world
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