One of the more distressing aspects of the contemporary world is just how frequently people are asked to swallow the most total malarkey. Case in point, current Catholic policy in regard to Islam. This policy, to dignify ahistoric fervent wishful hoping, is best exemplified by Pope Francis in this passage from Evangelii Gaudium:
253. In order to sustain dialogue with Islam, suitable training is essential for all involved, not only so that they can be solidly and joyfully grounded in their own identity, but so that they can also acknowledge the values of others, appreciate the concerns underlying their demands and shed light on shared beliefs. We Christians should embrace with affection and respect Muslim immigrants to our countries in the same way that we hope and ask to be received and respected in countries of Islamic tradition. I ask and I humbly entreat those countries to grant Christians freedom to worship and to practice their faith, in light of the freedom which followers of Islam enjoy in Western countries! Faced with disconcerting episodes of violent fundamentalism, our respect for true followers of Islam should lead us to avoid hateful generalisations, for authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.
Andrew Bieszad, at One Peter 5, has a brilliant piece in which he explains how this policy is directly the reverse of the position of the Church until the day before yesterday in historical terms:
I have a lot to say about Islam because there’s a lot that needs to be said that is NOT being said, and the Catholic faithful are suffering because of it. But I’ll begin with a simple proposition, one I will develop in future posts: The current, post-Vatican II view on Islam and Catholic-Muslim relations is in direct opposition to all related Catholic teaching that came before it.
“Dialogue” is not a solution to the problems of sin and salvation. That’s why Christ lived and died, established the Church on Peter, instituted the sacraments, and so on. This is understood intellectually by many Catholics involved in “dialogue,” but it is almost never realized in practice. The fact is, most “interreligious dialogue,” especially with Muslims, is a poor excuse for the inability or failure of those Catholics to evangelize. They choose to seek acknowledgement, approval, and even friendship from others instead of addressing the important issues of death, judgment, Hell, and Heaven with them.
There is no easy way to address any of these issues because Catholicism and Islam are dogmatically irreconcilable. One must accept one and reject the other or vice versa. There is no “common ground” with Islam except in mere superficialities, and even those “similarities” are often rooted in directly opposing dogmas. It’s like two people agreeing that doughnuts are bad because one doesn’t like the way doughnuts taste, while the other thinks doughnuts are an unhealthy, nutrient-void substitute for real food.
Go here to read the rest. A controversy roiled Saint Blogs about lying a few years ago, with some bloggers, I was not among them, stating that lies even to save lives were always sinful. When it comes to Islam, and other topics, I think all Catholics need to recall Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s admonition to live not by lies. Wishful thinking, completely unhinged from reality, can only be called a delusion if not a lie, and in either case is unworthy of followers of Christ.