Thursday, February 09, 2006

A priest is beaten in Izmir, to the cries of “we will kill you all”.

Things are getting ugly in Turkey. (link)

This was a Franciscan Friar. The Franciscans are, for those who don't know, a very peaceful and poor order of Catholic monks. They are, without exception in my experience, true examples of sacrifice. I have never met a member of this order who would not give you everything he had if you needed it. They have a strict vow of poverty and work in places that others are usually afraid to go, simply because they are needed.

A quote:

he attack took place within the monastic compound. The priest, who hails from Slovenia, is Martin Kmetec.

Msgr Padovese says that brother Kmetec reported the incident to local police but “they took little heed of the attack”.

Little heed of an attack inside a Monastery. This is just disgraceful. What is even more disgraceful is that it is not new and it is unnoticed by the large media outlets.

Here is a (link) to a story on Fr. Andrea Santoro, who was Martyerd the other day.

A quote from this story:

one realizes that he went to Turkey driven not for an interest in insipid “dialogue”, nor by the wish to do good to the poor and derelict, but by the desire to give new life to the Church, the body of Christ.

From this came also all his commitment towards the poor and prostitutes, his dialogue with Islam, but also with Hebraism. In one of his writings received by AsiaNews , he says what dialogue is: “Europe and the Middle East (including Turkey), Christianity and Islam must speak about themselves, of their recent and past history, of their way of conceiving man and of considering woman, of their own faith.

They must compare themselves against the image that each has of God, religion, the individual, society, on how to conjugate the power of God and the powers of the State, man’s duties before God and the rights which God, through grace, has conferred to human conscience.”


If the West truly wants to defeat fundamentalism, it must work to demand that Islamic countries guarantee Christians and members of other religions full freedom to act and to speak. The same must be done by eastern countries, if they truly wish to show that Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance.

Fr Andrea Santoro had offered his flesh so that “Christ may live in Turkey,” as he once said. In his death, Christ lived in Turkey to the point of sacrifice on the Cross. For this reason, as the Pope has once again said, Fr Andrea’s martyrdom will “contribute to the cause of dialogue between religions and peace among peoples.”

May we be led to unity. May we heal the wounds of our brothers and sisters as they heal ours. May Christ guide us and be with those who suffer for the love of Him. For our Coptic brothers and sisters, the Church of Martyrs. For the Catholic Church in Turkey. And for all Christians who are in the path of this wave of fanaticism and hatred. May our love, and the Love of Christ be their shield.

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