Pope: Christians the most persecuted

2010-12-16 22:24

Vatican City - Pope Benedict XVI says Christians are the religious group that suffers most from persecution.

He expressed this feeling in the Vatican's annual World Peace Day message for the new year. He laments that this year was again marked by "terrible acts of violence and religious intolerance".

Benedict said he is especially thinking of Christians in Iraq, where an attack on a Catholic cathedral in Baghdad in October killed two priests and more than 50 other faithful.

The Vatican on Thursday released the message, in which the pope equates lack of religious freedom with threats to world security and peace.

Benedict also decries what he calls "sophisticated forms of hostility to religion", including rejection of religious symbols at times in some Western countries.

  • slg - 2010-12-16 23:56

    Martyrs and victims unite. Grow up Pope. It's a tired, old story. We're sick of it.

      Lesley - 2010-12-17 00:18

      Feel better now slg? Why do you need to say things like that, that other Christians will read and will be hurt by it, especially Catholics? Do you feel powerful when you insult other people's religious leaders? Asswipe.

      slg - 2010-12-17 00:37

      Lesley, I was referring to the tired old manipulative story of being the most victimized. On another note, if you're interested in not insulting people, then why do it yourself. Doesn't make sense.

      leroux.valk - 2010-12-17 08:57

      @Lesley. Typical victim mentality there from you and the pope's side. Grow up, like slg said. I don't think you or the pope had any idea what real persecution means.

      exocist - 2010-12-17 21:57

      what about the millions of people the popes torchered and killed down the years and during the inquisition, who cries about them typical catholics always innocent

  • reyadhkhan - 2010-12-17 00:00

    oh wow, and thousands of Muslims who are persecuted all over the world? most of the intolerance in the world is actually directed at Islam. btw i dont agree with ANY religious persecution...

      Sharifa Martin - 2010-12-17 07:49

      I was about to say the exact same thing Reyad - any religious persecution is wrong - but what about islam? daily you hear of such stories.

      Krush - 2010-12-17 17:35

      Actually muslims persecute themselves. Just look how Muslim women are treated. Whats good for the goose is good for the gander..unless you're a muslim. Where it only takes a woman to commit adultery...who care that it takes two to tango...not even allowed to drive? no education? Muslim women know persecution from their very own.

      lean - 2010-12-19 08:08

      Should we start setting up internment camps for Muslims since they can't stop blowing themselves up?

      Jamesons - 2010-12-20 10:39

      If I go to Saudi Arabia, can I walk around with my holy Bible or would I be killed. Just asking?

      opineles - 2010-12-20 11:25

      @Jamesons - I doubt it I know burqas (spelling?) are not allowed in France and a muslim can get arrested wearing one. I think it's not allowed in some schools in America as well - as for officially, not sure about that one.

      Deon - 2010-12-20 20:32

      Bulldust. With few exceptions Muslims practice their faith in all so called Christian countries. However, people are condemned to death in Iran for spreading Christianity. In Zanzibar, 98% of the population is Islam. However the Slave Museum is run by the Anglican Church. Anyone can enter the Anglican Church, but I, as "Unbeliever" was denied entrance to mosques. Intolarence directed at Islam ???? 9/11, London Traim, Istanbul, Spain, bombs, suicide bombs, martyrs ???? Do you hear the bells???

  • Worldwise - 2010-12-17 00:42

    Thats rich coming from the head of an organisation that persecuted and tortured people that they didn't like or who thought differently. Then there are all the kids preyed upon by his priests. Yes Pope, grow up, your organisation is irrelevant in the modern world, as is all religion. The story has been recycled thousands of times.

      Kevin - 2010-12-17 01:31

      Over the last 1500 years, the Vatican has done more to destroy Christianity than any other organisation. Please don't confuse Christianity with Catholicism.

      RationalistPabi - 2010-12-17 08:34

      @worldwise: agree with you fully.

      Krush - 2010-12-17 17:36

      Catholics often confuse their belief with christianity. There are some big differences.

      stephanie.gaddin - 2010-12-18 04:10

      Oh please - like there's a difference between a religion that says you must believe in a virgin birth , and one that says their god has 8 arms and the one that say their prophet cannot be ridiculed. All religion is oppressive and reduces your choices. - 2010-12-18 11:42

      hi Kevin. I am having a bit of trouble understanding you. Christianity is the direct result of Catholicism. Or is the Roman Catholic church not the church on which all other christian churches derived from? I do agree that there is little in common between the more modern christian churches and the old faiths but thats what people call progress ... or am i somehow wrong?

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-18 17:45

      I agree Wolrdwise, it is another hypocritical and sensationalist leader. As for the paedophilic priests what did the church do to expose those priests ? Nothing, in fact they continue to want to protect them.

      Lanfear - 2010-12-20 10:15

      Fully agreed Worldwise! @ Krush - what utter nonsense! Protestant christianity stems directly from the Roman Catholic church. The only thing the protestants really did away with was the veneration of Mary, all the countless saints and some of the rituals. Otherwise the actual belief is exactly the same. The RCC is the first and oldest christian church. I can't understand how people cannot even know the origins of their own religions! Boggles the mind.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-20 17:31

      Hi Good point and you're partly right. Christianity however is a direct result of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ (hence the name Christianity), and not from Catholicism. The early church weren’t Catholics, they were followers of Christ.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-20 17:35

      @stephanie.gaddin The life of Christ was hardly oppressive. What worldview in your opinion broadens your choices, is not oppressive and makes no room for the supernatural? Postmodernism? – which oppresses anyone who believes in truth and certainty as categories. Evolution? Which believes in the big bang, where the laws of physics apparently broke down, in other words supernatural, and oppresses anyone who think otherwise in academia. Anti-theism? Which oppresses anything that would smack of belief on God – Mr Dawkins is a good case in point.

  • Subzone - 2010-12-17 00:48

    I don't agree with the personal opinion is that Islam is the most persecuted religion of current. I'm agnostic, but i strongly believe in freedom to practice whatever religion makes you happy. What i don't appreciated is people judging my choice and trying to force their opinions upon me. I really believe that religious intolerance is currently the biggest threat to mankind...not global warming!

      doyp7 - 2010-12-17 03:51

      Subzone - I think try and join the Taliban and other Extreme Islamic groups and you may change your mind. Sad thing is how quiet the moderate Islamic millions remain when innocent people in Iraq and Iran are blown apart by hatred and how loud they become when someone creates an innocent cartoon of a man - prophet or otherwise. Weird standards!

      Hux - 2010-12-17 07:10

      Cannot think of any 'Christian' countries that do not allow muslims to practice their faith. Can think of many Muslim countries that do not allow or tolerate Christian faith.

      Alfred - 2010-12-17 07:54

      dopy- you forgot to mention the million Iraqis killed by christian americans for the crime of having a ruthless dictator as a leader. A muslim who straps a bomb to him/herself and kills people is seen as barbaric yet an american or israeli pilot who drops a one ton bomb from twenty thousand feet on a wedding party is seen as a brave hero. Both result in the death and mutilation of innocent civilians yet among the mutilated limbs of the suicide bombers' victims are those of the bomber which makes him/her infinitely more courageous than the coward pilot bomber and way less of a moral hypocrite having done unto others as he/she has done unto themselves. As an atheist I view all religions as primitive irrational superstitions.

      Richard - 2010-12-17 08:40

      All of you are forgetting that Christianity calls for all people to love each other, Islam calls for Muslims to destroy other religions. Yes there are watward Christians and there are loving Muslims, but the overall philosophy abides.

      Margaret2 - 2010-12-17 10:25

      @ Alfred - on what do you base your assumption that the Americans are Christians?

      Zee - 2010-12-17 10:29

      @Richard - read the Quran and I think you'll find otherwise. Islam calls for tolerance of everyone's beliefs. Don't just blindly follow the media or paint everyone with the same brush. There are really good Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus etc - a few rotten eggs shouldn't spoil the whole basket.

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 12:27

      @ Zee You know, I hate to point out the obvious, but your claim is questionable from an Islamic jurisprudence perspective. 1. The koran sura which declares "there is no compulsion in religion" is dubious for the simple reason that islamic tradition (and tafsir) apply the principle of "abrogation" (i.e. earlier suras are cancelled by later suras). 2. This is relevant as the WAR suras were ALL revealed AFTER the peaceful suras- which means, the sword is superior to peace. If you do not believe me, do some proper research into this from prevailing Muslim sources 3. One of Mohammad's last instructions before he died was that the Arabia be free of non-Muslims (feel free to look it up) 4. Islam does not support tolerance as Sharia clearly imposes death for apostasy (this is easily ascertained by researching koran and hadith) 5. The Dhimma pact (often translated as "protection for Christians and Jews") is nothing more than mafia-like payment. Dhimmitude is religious discrimination which Christians and Jews must pay jizyah to "enjoy" 6. I could go on and on, but I think pointing people to the heart of Islam (i.e. Saudi Arabia) will suffice. Chapter 1 of the Constitution of Saudi Arabia clearly states that its religion is Islam, its law is the Koran and the sunnah (i.e. practice) of Mohammad. Hence, the beheadings for apostasy are fully in compliance with shariah- only the most deluded and ignorant people deny this.

      Krush - 2010-12-17 17:38

      @alfred. Calling yourself a christian and being a christian are two different things. Hitler also called himself a christian. Words are easy. But actions are what set christians apart. Stop confusing man's laws with Gods and blaming it on christianity.

      exocist - 2010-12-17 22:18


      lean - 2010-12-19 08:15

      This verse and others like it motivate terrorists and suicide bombers. Some Muslims use the 72 Virgins concept to meet certain goals, e.g. as a way to entice other Muslims into carrying out heinous activities that may endanger their lives. It is most often used to entice Muslims into carrying out "martyrdom operations" as suicide bombers who will be rewarded with 72 virgins in paradise for their sacrifice. In one event, British Muslim teenage boys were told to train with Kalashnikov rifles and promised 72 virgins in paradise if they died as religious martyrs.[25] It is thought that such enticing methods become the main motivation for poor, depressed and uneducated Muslim youths to become suicide bombers who believe they will spend eternity with 72 Virgins in paradise.

      Rajty - 2010-12-20 08:27

      This is a comment for Psalm - where do you get your crap from. Don't read selective pasages and draw your conclusions on the whle form that. There are so many hadiths about the profit showing utmost resepct to people who were from different religions, or from those who simply disrespected him. Your conclusions tyupiofy why muslims are persecuted - because fools like yourselves think they know the religion. islam is not seperate from the other religions- it is a follow on of them Therefore jesus, Moses, abraham, Mary etc are all intergral parts of Islam if Islam is hatred then those profits must also be the embodiment of that.

      Oryx_ZA - 2010-12-20 10:03

      @Richard. Please, some Islamic sects are far more peaceful then Christians. You cannot judge a whole religion by their extremists. Or should I start lumping your beliefs in with those Christians cults in America that encourage racist attacks against Jews and blacks?

      Oryx_ZA - 2010-12-20 10:06

      @lean If i were to take extracts from the Christian old testimant, you can find some horrible versers. You can take anything out of context. Oh, and i would like to remind you that the Koran and the old testiments share some very strong ties with each other.

      Psalm - 2010-12-20 13:22

      @ Rajty I get what you call "crap" from the koran and hadith which are SAHIH. Do you know what "sahih" means, or must I now explain the word to you? That you believe that the utterings of the koran and hadith are "crap" (as you call them) is a view you are more than entitled to hold and share. Let me share with you another teaching which is "sahih". Mohammad is clearly recorded as saying "he who deserts his religion (i.e. Islam), kill him". This principle is applied wherever sharia is enforced fully- eg Saudi Arabia. Islam has no relation to Judaism and Christianity. Islam rejects Tanach and the New Testament- calling them corrupt. The Islam's Issa is not the Jesus Christ of the Bible. The Bible declares that Jesus Christ is a Jewish Messiah- not a muslim slave of allah. The mere fact that muslims worship a god does not mean they worship the God of Bible. Biblical doctrine rejects the god of Mohammad. Any ill-feelings towards muslims are truly a result of Islamic oppression of non-muslims and Islamic terror. If you oppress Christians, Hindus, women, etc and chop off limbs and lash people as a proud display of Islam, can you really be shocked when the world is appalled, disgusted or holds other unfavourable views of muslims? Muslims are not persecuted in the West, they merely adopt a victim mentality and want special treatment. The French ban on religious symbols is an example. It applies to ALL- only muslims claim "persecution" from this law.

      CharlieChap - 2010-12-20 16:39

      @Psalm: Your lst comment has not been challenged so I quess you truly have said all - in a wise and fairly sophisticated manner, if I may say so!

  • slg - 2010-12-17 00:50

    At least he and the church have woken up to the use of condoms. Helloooo! Welcome to the 20th Century. You're only a century behind now. - 2010-12-18 11:44

      sig ... its the 21 century buddy.

      Oryx_ZA - 2010-12-20 10:07

      haha, not quite. He has stated that "male prostitutes should consider using condoms if they do not change their ways" not exatly 21st

      Jimmy - 2010-12-20 13:21

      @Oryx_ZA. Yeah, I wonder why he's only worried about male prositutes?

  • slg - 2010-12-17 01:06

    I've read the comments about Islam being persecuted. In what way? If it's about opposition to the extreme, distorted expression of Islam as practiced by Al-Quaeda and the Taliban, then I cannot agree. There should be no tolerance for these expressions. They're as bad as anything that has existed on earth in the history of humankind, taking us back to the time when the church was openly persecuting, murdering, stealing left-right-and-center. The church and other religions steal and persecute more subtley now, through manipulations of guilt and fear.

  • doyp7 - 2010-12-17 03:45

    Christianity is persecuted in the Islam centred countries(Indonesia, Saudi, Iraq, Iran). Which christian country is persecuting Moslems to the same degree - murder, torture and brutality? The Pope dictates on birth control is mostly ignored by catholics themselves and when the church eventually allows Priests to marry to reduce their predatory activities towards kids then we may see a new relevant church arise.

      Alfred - 2010-12-17 08:08

      heard of Abu Grahb or Guantanamo or rendition or waterboarding. A million muslim iraqis murdered by christian americans for the crime of having a ruthless dictator and that's not counting the half a million infants that died because of lack of medicines due to the american lead sanctions. When asked about the half million dead infants that callous bitch Madeline Allbright (american sectretary of state) stated that she thought it was a price worth paying.

      Zee - 2010-12-17 10:31

      A very good example springs to mind - the U.S of A!

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 10:43

      @ Alfred "a million muslim iraqis murdered by christian americans for the crime of having a ruthless dictator". WOW! American reality re-written! Newsflash, Alfred, the US Army is made up of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, Atheists, Wiccans service men and women, to name a few. So, I am quite curious as to where you obtained such fictitious stuff- that the Iraqis (including the Iraqi terrorists, of course) were only killed by Christian Americans? No Muslim American soldiers are weilding guns in Iraq? No Atheists either? Not one Hindu amongst US soldiers based in Iraq? Perhaps you should inform Gates and Obama that they don't know jack about the composition of their own Army!

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 10:58

      @ Zee Of course! Those horrible, evil, vile Americans are persecuting Muslims. What horror! Muslim Amercians are guaranteed the same rights as other Americans- including freedom of religion. America has THOUSANDS of mosques which operate freely, many muslim schools and colleges, etc. Unlike Christian converts living in Malaysia and Islamic paradise Saudi Arabia, Muslim converts in USA do not have to register their conversion to Islam or even face beheading for daring to convert. Unlike Copts in Eqypt, Muslim American women are not living in fear of being abducted and forcibly converted to Islam and married of to (i.e. raped by) an Eqyptian Muslim! Goodness, these barbaric Americans even allow their President to invite Muslims to the White House to celebrate Eid! Such persecution must stop now! Muslim Americans must be treated with the same dignity and respect that Saudi Arabia extends to non-Muslims - nothing less! I rest my case...

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 11:08

      @ Zee USA? Wow! Perhaps the USA should extend the same humane treatment to its Muslims as that which Saudi Arabia extends to its non-Muslims! Americans must immediately stop persecuting their Muslim population through guaranteeing their religious freedom and should, rather, treat them as Saudi Arabia treats non-Muslims.

      PikeLee - 2010-12-17 16:09

      Agreed, you try to build a church in any of those countries and see what happens. And yet how many mosques are there in Europe and the americas alone, never mind asia.. You forget how China persecutes Christians as well:

      Krush - 2010-12-17 17:40

      Christianity doesn't allow for murder. Islam does. Christianity says love, forgive and serve. Islam says "I'm the man and the woman will serve me.." and let's not forget the part about the "Infidel."

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-18 17:58

      Doyp7 - It is not that christians are more tolerant. It is the democractic governments and laws of the country that allow freedom of religion. The church, especially the Catholic has always seen themselves above the law and government. Look at the recent case in Belgium where the Pope was complaining about the siezure of Church files by police as an example. I also do not think allowing priests to mary will prevent them from being paedophiles. There are other ways for them to release their sexual urges rather than on young boys. Besides they are supposed to be so spiritual that sex is not necessary, is that not why they became priests, because they are so spiritual ?

  • Kevin Rack - 2010-12-17 03:57

    Coming from the most despicable and foul organisation that has murdered millions to make millions. The Vatican is not about Christianity but about power. Think Crusades, think Conquistadors and the inquisition and to add child molestation and support for the Nazis. Saying that Christians are persucuted in all Islamic countries and even by the Israelis as Christians make up 30% of the Palestinain population.

  • Peter - 2010-12-17 05:51

    Why do different religions even exist? Because while 'love' is preached, an 'us/them' mentality is lived. So much violence is perpetrated 'in the name of God.' I was shocked to discover the Christian Crusades took place over a period of 150 years - those years, which were marked with much bloodshed at the hand of Christians, were ordained to firmly establish Catholicism. Please understand it is not the ordinary rank and file we are to be weary of; it is those in authority. Those we are led to believe me must revere. For me it is sad to think that, should Pope Benedict be shot and killed, a new pope would simply be elected to perpetuate that seat of power. What goes around comes around - go home and shut the door of your heart on violence and begin the reign of peace on your world.

      Hux - 2010-12-17 07:16

      Good question. All religions are some form of cult. God created spirituality and the devil organised it into religions.

      141mat - 2010-12-17 08:36

      @hux. 100% agreed.

      cervezab - 2010-12-18 09:04

      nice one Hux

      Tieneke - 2010-12-20 12:54

      Amen to Hux's comment!!!

  • gb2161 - 2010-12-17 06:19

    Ag shame! The geriatic virgin is a well known liar and I am sure Ray Mccauly, Pat Robertson and Benny Hinn will agree.

      Brieuse - 2010-12-17 07:45

      They're not exactly saints either.

      SaintBruce - 2010-12-17 08:12

      Just check your comments first. Catholicism is a pagan religious system cloaked in a 'christian' garment in name only. True Christianity is having a living lifestyle relationship with a living , loving God. Go and study what this is and who promotes it before name calling and lumping all Christians into the same pot! Some may not like my description of Catholicism but they need to get educated on what it really stands for - try reading "The Two Babylons" by Hislop, or "50 Years in the Church of Rome" by Charles Chiniquy. It is a fact that Christians the world over are openly persecuted and when they are, no one says a word. Say something controversial about Islam ( like The Prophet's very young wife wiped the blood off his sword after he slaughtered dissident opponents!) and they jump on your neck with a great religious fervour! By the way, Jesus never used a sword against anyone but rather respected life and the lives of others as rather special. Try His way on for size, it really works.

      exocist - 2010-12-17 22:25


      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-18 18:06

      @SaintBruce. Firstly I think Jesus's messages of love stemmed from the east rather than it being christian per say. Secondly, you obviously have not read the same bible I have. The King James version contains many passages promoting war, murder, xenophobia, homophobia, misogny and religious intollerence. Perhaps you should take a slow read through it. Religion is just another method of controlling the minds of those who cannot think for themselves.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-20 18:01

      @FreeMan2 - If “Controlling the minds of those who cannot think for themselves” is the message you got from reading bible, then perhaps you should read a little slower. The bible as a whole answers the most basic, yet fundamental, questions of our existence, and answers it most coherently as such – meaning, morality, origins and destiny. Other worldviews, such as atheism, postmodernism, existentialism, humanism, evolutionism or any other –ism cannot answer those fundamental questions coherently. Most importantly though, the bible is a message on how to be free from our own evil proclivities and how to obtain forgiveness through Christ.

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-21 05:42

      @stifflerg1. So what part of it frees us ? The part where women should not teach but be taught, the part where we should spare the rod and spoil the child encouraging brutal punishment of our children, or is the ten commandments which says our god is a jealous god and though should not place strange gods before him, that does not encourage religious tolerance. Then there is the story of Sodom and Gomorra where instead of Lot giving up the men of village for sex he substituted his virgin daughters - nice dad hey, how does that encourage womens rights ? You should take another slow read my friend and you will find examples everywhere of such intollerant attitudes and hows does such narrow minded intollerance free us ? It cannot.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-21 11:31

      @FreeMan2 – and you’re conveniently overlooking the fact that some of the first disciples of Christ were women? And that Jesus chose to reveal Himself after the resurrection to women first? That the book of acts names, with high regard that is, women church leaders? That the book of Ruth epitomizes a godly women whom with great courage saved her nation? That God promised a woman named Sarah that she will bare a child in her barrenness and through the fruit of “her” womb all of humanity would be blessed? That Jesus welcomed little children and said of such is the kingdom? Did Jesus say unless you are a big strong intolerant male who rules over women with an iron fist you cannot enter the kingdom? Or did He say unless you are as a little child, you cannot enter His kingdom? Seriously, you extract isolated incidents out of context, quickly believing the few but not prepared to do the same with the whole. Take a read through the entire bible without any prejudice. Also much of what you said has a moral basis – but that’s another subject all together.

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-22 04:14

      @stifflerg1. How can the passages, that are in the bible be taken out of context ? What about Lots actions, what do you think of that message ? What about this: To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you." -Genesis 3:16. Or these Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. -1 Corinthians 14:34 A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. -1 Timothy 2:11 I could quote so many more and not just against women, how can this be taken out of context, it is there in black in white in the bible, look it up. The is alot of evidence to support what i said, which was the bible promotes promoting war, murder, xenophobia, homophobia, misogny and religious intollerence.

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-22 04:17

      The Catholic Encyclopedia defines prophecy as "understood in its strict sense, it means the foreknowledge of future events, though it may sometimes apply to past events of which there is no memory, and to present hidden things which cannot be known by the natural light of reason - Sounds like fortune telling to me

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-22 14:14

      @FreeMan2-Then please do answer why the bible places women in such high regard as I mentioned before? Book of Ruth, Jesus’ disciples, Sarah etc. Also, all your objections are morally based, which is so self defeating, but let’s address that for a moment. You say, “bible promotes promoting war, murder, xenophobia, homophobia, misogny and religious intollerence” – So you agree that murder, misogyny, xenophobia etc. is wrong. (sounds very Richard Dawkins-ish) But how do you even get to those categories without a transcendent God who gave us a moral sense of right and wrong? Does science explain why you can distinguish between right and wrong? No, science cannot tell you why you intuitively know murder is wrong. As the syllogism goes, if there is no God, then there can be no moral law (sense of right and wrong), if there is no moral law, then there can be no good, and without good, there can be no evil – so what exactly are you complaining about?? An atheistic standpoint on any of those categories you mentioned are absolutely self defeating. Do you understand the concept of “context”? You wrote, “What about Lots actions, what do you think of that message?” So you think his message is “awesome” and agree with whatever Lot did? See what happens when something’s taken out of context? Do you understand the context and message in the bible regarding freewill etc.? Do you know what the city of Corinth was like what the Corinthian churches struggled with at the time of Paul’s letter?

  • Sluggo - 2010-12-17 06:26

    I have to agree with Kevin. The doctrine of the R.C.C. has little to do with true Christianity as most of its practices are pagan-based. Most sincere catholics follow this doctrine like confused, misguided sheep.

      slg - 2010-12-17 07:49

      Pagan spiritual practices were more authentic and real than modern-day religious practices. Christianity destroyed much of them, for political reasons and purposes of control.

      stephanie.gaddin - 2010-12-18 04:22

      Ha ha - you guys are so funny - bet you didn't know that ALL christian holidays and practices are pagan based ... - Christmas is a mish-mash of wiccan yule and the germanic winter solstice celebrations - celebrating the birth of the Saviour into the dark world to bring 'Light' and knowledge to the masses. The traditions and belief about the star in the sky predate 'Jesus' by about 500 years odd. Easter is directly stolen from Oestara , the celebration of fertility ( hence the eggs and bunnies ), as well as the death and resurrection of Dionysus ( who strangely enough was crucified and placed in a tomb only to rise again 3 days later in front of his trusted disciples). You just gave me such a giggle .... thanks for that ... I love it , your personal flavour of christian is not pagan , but the catholic one is? he he he he . I love it. So - do you also think that eggs don't come from chickens then ?

      Psalm - 2010-12-18 12:26

      @ stephanie.gaddin Not that your comment is by any stretch of the imagination related to the issue raised in the article, however, your blatant ignorance compels me to respond to you. Your claim that "ALL Christian holidays and practices are pagan based" is so ridiculous it should only be made by an ignoramus. CRUCIFIXION of Dionysus? What planet do you inhabit? Dionysus was the Greek god of the grape harvest, wine, etc. No crucifixion. No resurrection. No tomb. Crucifixion (as a penalty) was invented so late in human history that there is NO PAGAN connection to it. Only Christianity has a religious connection to crucifixion- simple education should reveal this fact to you. Christmas was superimposed by the RC on pagan yule to draw pagans away from pagan celebrations. Christianity is clear that Christ has no connection to 25 December. That's the only educated point you've made. The word "Easter" and use of bunnies and eggs are pagan. However, none of those have anything to do with the Christian celebration. What people incorrectly call "Easter" is in fact BIBLICAL PASSOVER. The RC ditched the Biblical Jewish calender for the Roman solar calender & changed the name of the feast from PASSOVER to "Easter"- to draw pagans & cut Jewish ties. We don't celebrate fertility, we celebrate the death and resurrection of Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus Christ) who died at PASSOVER. Go read the Bible. Pentecost is a Biblical Jewish feast. Ascension is Biblical, etc, etc.

      stephanie.gaddin - 2010-12-20 10:17

      @Psalm - what ? Seriously ? You mean all the professors of the Classics and History lied to me ? I am so shocked I am going to run off and join a catholic convent right this second ....

      Psalm - 2010-12-20 13:00

      @ stephanie.gaddin Any so-called "professor" who is so ignorant of Greek mythology and yet dares to lecture it does not deserve the title "professor"- especially when the information is so simple and basic, I could ask a school kid to research the topic. Any so-called historian who does not know that the Bible says clearly that Yeshua died at Passover should not be teaching anyone anything on that topic. Kindly provide us the names of the professors who lectured you, as well as the institution they work at and I will happily look them up and enquire from them personally as to whether YOU have accurately conveyed what they allegedly taught you. I await the details. Thanks in advance.

      Irené - 2010-12-20 15:26

      @ Psalm Only a pretentious twat will give himself a name from the books in the bible. Stephanie is 100% correct. You just to deluded to see it. Go on and celebrate your pseudo christian holidays. Just know you are no smarter or enlightened than a peasant living in the middle ages, only difference is you have a choice in what you want to believe, they were forced.

      Psalm - 2010-12-20 16:08

      @ Irené Let me get this straight: It is YOUR "educated" opinion (or rather, scholarly view- pardon me) that the Bible does not state that Jesus Christ was crucified at Passover? My, would you care to educate the planet- for that is who you will be educating of course - as to why the Bible clearly records Jesus Christ celebrating the Passover supper with His disciples- as per Jewish tradition? Why, in your "expert" opinion of course, is Jesus Christ called the Passover Lamb then? In your "learned" opinion, how do Christians celebrate the "fertility rites"? Furthermore, we would appreciate your "expert" teaching on the newly invented Greek mythology of a crucified, entombed and resurrected Dionysus! In which Greek city was Dionysus celebrated in such a fashion? I'd rather be a "peasant" than an arrogant fool.

      CharlieChap - 2010-12-20 16:42

      I like this Psalm dude / dudette !

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-20 18:31

      @stephanie.gaddin. The birth of Christ was prophesied by Isaiah between 800-900 BC (and that’s conservative dating). I believe that dates much later than 500 BC (from wherever that source may be). Regarding the death and resurrection, Dionysus weren’t the only one, there were Tammuz, Odin, Orpheus, Osiris and many other such stories, but none of which is regarded as historical events. You are also committing a very serious philosophical fallacy, namely the “Law of the undistributed middle”, which says just because two things have one thing in common, doesn’t make it the same thing. You have ears, monkeys have ears, therefore you are a monkey – see how ridiculous that is?

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-21 05:45

      @stifflerg1. I thought the tolerant bible forbids fortune telling and prophecy.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-21 11:37

      @FreeMan2 - No not prophecy – no time to go into biblical prophecy, but large portions of the Old Testament are prophecies pertaining to the coming Messiah. Are you sure you read the book?

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-22 04:18

      The Catholic Encyclopedia defines prophecy as "understood in its strict sense, it means the foreknowledge of future events, though it may sometimes apply to past events of which there is no memory, and to present hidden things which cannot be known by the natural light of reason - Sound like fortune telling to me.

      stephanie.gaddin - 2010-12-22 13:03

      You take yourself way too seriously. But I have to thank you - your genuine affront at my lack of education and intellect has given me and my husband endless hours of amusement. So I thank you for that. I think the bit that I most enjoy is your condescension. I find it incredibly entertaining to bait people like you. Whatever you may think about me - know this : You aren't going to get much out of me except cocky comments , I don't need to prove my intellect or knowledge to you in any way shape or form .. oh yes - I could also recommend some light reading ( one of many .... ) Try the Jesus Mysteries. A bunch of nerds set out to prove that Jesus was a historical figure in archeology and historical texts and ended up proving the complete opposite, it's one of about a hundred books on my book shelf that makes me love poking fun at people who take this whole nonsense too seriously

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-22 15:05

      @FreeMan2 - Copy and paste “jobbies”:) I won’t do that. Anyway, if you truly read the bible, like you profess to have done, you would know the bible makes clear distinctions between fortune-telling, which many times overlaps with spiritualism, mediums, divination, etc. and Theo-centric prophecies. Read Micah.. And you will have fortune-tellers no more. Biblical prophecy is God speaking to His people about future events – it is Theo-centric

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-22 17:10

      @stephanie.gaddin - you're so right, really - apologies from my end.

  • Rhino - 2010-12-17 07:00

    The Crusades come full circle Mr Pope?

  • Poaul Zwarts - 2010-12-17 07:26

    The Rat in the Hat should be strung up for crimes against humanity, and he isn't, yet, still he complains...

  • RR - 2010-12-17 08:10

    Pope is talking c--p!!!most persecuted are the Hindus. They are not physically persecuted but mentally by Christians who want to convert them. Pope - please stop trying to convert the world to Christianity!!!!All religions are GOOD.

      lean - 2010-12-19 08:24

      Well, then pray to Rats and Cows... They are Holly, LoL

  • Worldwise - 2010-12-17 08:29

    The ultimate demonstration of faith and belief in a protecting power; - The bullet proof Popemobile.

  • goyougoodthing - 2010-12-17 08:37

    I think the Pope is smoking something. His church has been responsible for more persecutions than any other in history.

  • Bevan Williams - 2010-12-17 09:12

    Jews win this argument hands down. Both Christianity and Islam have roots in Judaism and their continuous persecution is evident in many a history book. Also, have none of you heard of the holocaust? And just for the record I am not Jewish.

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 10:21

      Islam does not have any roots in Judaism as Islam clearly rejects Tanach (the Old Testament) claiming it is corrupt. Trying to rewrite the history and heritage of Jews (as Islam does) is not evidence of having "roots in Judaism", but rather evidences the rejection thereof. Furthermore, as the Pope's comment is about CURRENT persecution, are you claiming that there is currently a holocaust going on that the rest of the planet knows nothing about? The Pope is not talking about past persecution- perhaps you'd like to re-read the article?

      Zee - 2010-12-17 10:46

      What about the American Indians? 10 million wiped out to create the U.S. Hands down the most persecuted group in history! And the most blatently ignored event too.

      Krush - 2010-12-17 17:43

      @Zee. Quite interesting.

  • Matthew Wilke - 2010-12-17 09:49 3 examples, from 3 countries, where christians are openly and acceptedly persecuted... Do these same things to other religions and imagine the out-cry.... Just sayin'

      cervezab - 2010-12-18 09:17

      1. Guantanamo Bay - Suspected people tortured and imprisoned without any human rights, and no proof for their guilt is needed to justify their imprisonment 2. France - No-one is allowed to wear certain religious attire 3. Kenya - NGO's only provide food for people that claim to be Christian, all other people are refused help 3 examples in 3 countries, do you agree with them or will you cry out?

      Psalm - 2010-12-18 12:40

      @ cervezab I am not sure what your point is, exactly. Guantanamo Bay operates under US secular law, not Biblical law or any supposed "Christian" law. US does not apply religious law, be it Christian, Jewish, Muslim, etc. France practices "laicite" (secularism with a French twist). The law against religious symbols (i.e. crosses, crucifixes, Jewish caps, hijabs, Sikh turbans, etc) applies to ALL religions and applies to all public schools. Private religious schools are exempt. Kenya- please provide evidence of your claims. I personally follow Christian relief work and have NEVER heard such a claim. What I do know is that Christian relief agencies are often attacked in Muslim majority areas in various places around the world as Muslim hatred for Christian missionaries and relief agencies seems to know no limits.

  • Psalm - 2010-12-17 10:09

    It is clear from many of the comments below that our education system is appalling. People fail to comprehend simple articles. 1. The Pope is talking about NOW - not some Medieval Period or times past. 2. For the informed, it is clear that Christians are persecuted in ALL Muslim countries (the only difference being the degree of persecution), in China, various parts of India, to list a few. 3. Discrimination against Christians is on the rise in the West (as evidenced by various court cases being fought for and on behalf of Christians whose rights to freedom of religion are being trampled upon while Muslims, Sikhs, etc have their rights protected and respected). NO OTHER FAITH suffers such widespread persecution. I challenge any informed and intelligent person to prove me wrong. 5. The issue of paganism in the RC is well made and very accurate, however, that is not the point of the article. 6. It is the RESPONSIBILITY of TRUE CHRISTIANS to take up their Cross and follow Christ in Truth. No Christian can be indifferent to the persecution of those who call upon the Name of Jesus Christ. We are one body and we suffer together. It is our responsiblity to help EVERY persecuted follower of Christ. Let us ignore the anti-Christian commentors and focus on loving and helping our brothers and sisters around the world. By this shall all men know that we are Jesus Christ's disciples.

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-17 11:11

      Do you not think that Christianity is directly responsible for current persecutions and atrocities the world over? Afghanistan is an example of a Christian country basically invading another country and using religion (backed by the US state department) to justify the killing of civilians. What about the continued persecution of homosexuals? What about not allowing a girl/woman the right to an abortion for the sake of a moral judgment that may not be their belief? It's not cut and dried, personally I think any religious dogma, in any format, is a bad idea, I don't see any good coming out of any of them. I see war and death backed up by religions on all sides. You can't say Christianity does not play a major part in this continued fighting.

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 11:47

      @ goyougoodthing No, I do not think that Christianity is directly responsible for the current persecutions. China is "communist", Muslim states are, well, Muslim- so how can the oppressed Christians in those countries by resposible? USA (a SECULAR state with a majority population that professes to be Christian) went to war against Afghanistan (a country that granted protection to Bin Laden). Go back to the events leading up to war- USA went to war for political reasons- not religious zeal. Persecution of homosexuals? In USA, which guarantees equality to all irrespective of "sexual orientation"? Arbotion is guaranteed under Roe vs Wade. A Christian's right to object to performing an arbotion must be guaranteed- or are you supporting liberal facism that seeks to abolition freedom of conscience? Christian Americans clearly want the USA to be governed by Biblical principles- however, politically and governmentally speaking, USA is secular. You also forget that communist atheists have slaughtered MILLIONS. I find your claim that Christianity plays a "major part in continued fighting" questionable. Can you name any Christian organisation/institution or grouping that is currently playing a major part in the continued fighting, raising up "holy armies in the Name of Jesus Christ"? There is none. But you are right in pointing out that some of these issues are not always "cut and dried". But there are however clear Biblical and unBiblical positions on issues.

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-17 12:54

      What I see are 'Christian' countries fighting against 'Islam' like it's a disease that needs to be wiped from the earth. I see judgment of those that do not believe in religion, or those that believe in other religions daily. Perhaps I should have been more clear on the abortion issue though, I was not referring to the US, I was referring to Ireland. I also question the Pope's previous stand on condoms or any form of birth control. I would prefer there to be no religion, in any form, as it just creates as place for people to judge each other according to a belief that cannot be proved rightly or wrongly. Supporting evidence for the existence of God or god cannot be found, except in the apparent miracle of creation itself. There is no proof, that is why it's called faith. Anyway, my personal issues aside, I do strongly think though that the Pope's remarks continue to enforce the notion of US and THEM rather than a unified humanity.

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 13:24

      @ goyougoodthing Perhaps you'd like to list the "Christian" countries that are at war with Islam (as you claim). There are no such countries, except in your mind. USA, Canada and their EU allies are all secular states. Feel free to look up the word " secular" in any dictionary, you'll note that it does not mean "Christian". So, either you do not know what "Christianity" is or you're deliberately creating your own reality. Muslim countries however clearly state that they're Islamic and that all laws are subject to shariah/islamic jurisprudence. Feel free to challenge me on this, but note that I have read many of these Constitutions. They are Islamic- not secular- with perhaps one exception- Kosovo (for now) though I stand to be corrected on this one. With regard to the Pope, are you now self-rigteously claiming that it is wrong for the Pope to stand up for persecuted Christians??? You can't blame the Pope for the US/THEM mentality- the persecuting nations are responsible for that. I find your sense of morality questionable that you object to the Pope defending Christian victims of persecution, implying that Christians should shut up when persecuted. On what basis is Christian persecution is acceptable to you? Because Christians believe in God and you don't? What unified humanity are you referring to? The one that is unified in persecuting Christians? I find your objection to the Pope's remarks (which are true) uacceptable based on basic logic and simple humanity.

      stacey.dejager - 2010-12-17 13:57

      Psalm, who ever you are- I would like to express my admiration for your educated and insightful remarks. I am often on this site, and I have read through all the drivel of people bashing each others race and religion, and political choises. Your comments and replies have been inspirational, and in MY opinions, correct. I find it refreshing that in todays society there can be an individual like yourself who can conduct himself in an educated and highly distinguished manner. Good on you pal. - you should start a blog.

      stacey.dejager - 2010-12-17 14:08

      PSALM- i think you rock.

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-17 14:16

      Aren't Christians supposed to turn the other cheek? Besides, I'm pretty sure being persecuted will land you in Paradise. Test your faith. I understand full well what secular means, I also understand how convenient it is to hide behind it, even though the very foundation of hatred towards Islam is based in the Christian teachings handed down at the 'secular' state schools. I still stand behind my statement, he is inciting hate with his little tantrum. It's a pity the mothers and daughters of Iraq and Afghanistan also don't have a platform to tell their stories of abuse at the hands of infidels. You all shout and accuse each other of the very thing you do back. Believe what you want, just don't be judgmental of others who do the same. So what if a country follows Islam, what difference does it make to your life? What about the Palestinians being persecuted by Jews? I just really wish you could take off the glasses of dogma and be objective about this.

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 15:04

      @ goyougoodthing A wise man tests the ground his stands upon, something you clearly care little for as you stand on your fiction. You claim that the Pope is "inciting hate" - prove it by quoting the exact hateful comments he made as set out in the article. You seem to know little or nothing of Islam's wars of aggression against Christians and Jews. THAT was the beginning of the problem. If I had time to teach you history I would give you a clear timeline of Mohammad's (and later on, his followers') wars of aggression against Christians and Jews. On Palestinians "persecuted" by Jews - you do realise that your comment is (unintentionally) oxymoronic, right? The original Palestinians are in fact JEWS - not Arabs. The Emperor Hadrian changed the name of Israel (inhabited by Jews) to "Palestine" (Hellenised "Philistine") to infuriate the Jews. Feel free to research. On another note, the so-called "Palestinians" you are referring to are not under Israeli rule- but under PA and/or Hamas rule. When Hamas (whose charter supports violent jihad and sharia as the way) took over Gaza, Christian persecution increased in Gaza. If you are interested in facts, you'd be aware of Christian stores being attacked by Muslims, Hamas' slogan of "First Saturday, then Sunday" (meaning first kill Jews, then Christians), etc. The number cause of Christian departure from the Middle East is persecution by Muslims. Your grasp of the Bible is poor. Persecution must come, but woe to the persecutor!

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 15:06

      @ stacey.dejager Thank you for your kind of words. I try to share a bit of what I have learnt along the way. God bless and keep you!

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-17 15:18

      If not to incite hate, then what purpose did the Pope's outburst serve? If Christians are persecuted, they are persecuted by OTHER. You are trying to be rational but your obvious hatred of those that are not Christian bubbles to the surface. Are Islamic forces to blame for some wars, sure they are. Are all Muslims evil, of course not. Same can be said for Christians, Jews, Hindus etc. Islam may have gone to war against the Christians but the Christians also managed to walk all the way from Europe to the Middle East to go to war during the crusades. Talk about poking a stick at a snake. The Pope, the last in a long line of manipulative, power hungry evil men, intent on control of the masses through fear and indoctrination. I have no time for that kind of person. I also have no issue with you,just the Pope's words, I'm not blaming one side more than another, I simply blame them, us, all.

      Psalm - 2010-12-17 15:51

      @ goyougoodthing "If not to incite hate, then what purpose did the Pope's outburst serve? If Christians are persecuted, they are persecuted by OTHER." Your position is nothing less than immoral. Using your immoral and illogical reasoning, activists who objected to the Rwanda genocide where "inciting hatred" against the murderers, those who objected to the holocaust were "inciting hatred" against Hitler and the Nazi, those who objected to Apartheid were "inciting hatred" against the National Party, those who oppose "kill the boer" slogans are "inciting hatred" against Malema, those who oppose the genocide in Darfur are "inciting hatred" against the butchers, etc. It is clear you lack any appreciation of simple moral values. I must also challenge your claim that some "Christians" are "evil". Do you KNOW the definition of a "Christian" is? I am not talking about political definitions... Your comment about the Crusade reveals deep ignorance. The Europeans launched the Crusades IN RESPONSE TO ISLAMIC AGGRESSION - historical facts. Muslims did the poking- not the Europeans. Your comment on the Pope reveals YOUR deep-seated hatred for him. Any person of decent morals would not object to the Pope's words. I also dispute your claim that you are not blaming "them"- you have attempted to blame persecuted Christians for the conduct of their oppressors. Much like a sick person blaming a rape victim for the vile act of the rapist and also objecting to the victim laying a charge!

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 09:25

      Okay, your response is typical, the kind of blind logic I can only attribute to fools who worship invisible men in the sky who don't talk back. You lot deserve what you get. Cheers

      exocist - 2010-12-18 09:30

      to goyougoodthing hey what kind of dried camel shit are you smoking,as far as i know god has been banned from schools in most of if not all of those secular schools that you say teach christianity, get your facts straight before you try to protect religion and not GOD, GOD is love,religions support wars and hate

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 11:00

      @exo... God does not exist. The sooner people realise this the better.

      lean - 2010-12-19 08:31

      And for God you do not exist ether...

  • damon.leff - 2010-12-17 10:33

    The Pope doesn't know what he's talking about. Witches are the most persecuted religious minority in the world, and the persecutors are Christians!

      Francois B - 2010-12-17 16:09

      I dont really care what the pope says or thinks. He is outright the most insane public figure around these days. Telling Africans not to wear condoms, then changes his mind.. Then also the sexual abuse scandal. Why anyone still think that this crazy old man should get any respect is beyond me.

      Tieneke - 2010-12-20 13:05

      Yes, who died and made the Pope God? Why do people "worship" every word that comes out of this mans mouth. He is a human sinner just as I am. Gods love is linked to no religion and because you belong to a certian one does not make you one of His favorites.......

  • Don - 2010-12-17 17:03

    What a load of drivel....Go and fiddle with a few more alter boys!!!

      exocist - 2010-12-18 09:37

      maybe catholic men should stop wearing dresses thats why they get confused ,men and boys start to look like women to them ,just an observation

      Tormore - 2010-12-18 11:45

      Crime like this happens in every society, in every country and in every religion. So the Catholics were chosen this time - next might be "all doctors are paedophiles" or "all teachers are paedophiles" ... heck, even "all people with red hair carry the paedophile gene". Generalization is always dangerous! Stop hitting on the Catholics and DO something about it! P.S.: this also applies to Allieo's comment!

  • Allieo - 2010-12-17 17:35

    Yes and lets not forget the Little Catholic boys and girls who suffered at the hands of their church leaders.

  • bcrede - 2010-12-17 19:17

    This message has no basis. By my understanding there is no independent organisation in the world that keeps track of religious persecutions. If the Catholic Church IS keeping a record of year-by-year acts of persecution they would clearly be biased towards their fellow Christians and thus their research should be discounted. As can be seen by the other comments on this message board, all this message will do is spread religious intolerance.

  • - 2010-12-17 20:19

    Christianity has very little to do with Christ or his teachings for that matter. Christianity as a religion was founded when Paul overindulged on syrian rue on the road to damascus and had a DMT experience. The book you base your religion on was officially censored to include only verse that suited the doctrine of the church at the time and is continually changing - there are currently more than 500 versions, read interpretaions, in print wordwide. Wake up and smell the coffee. ALL religion is nothing more than a form of controll. Along with nation states, patriotism, sporting events and anything else that instills an us and them mentallity, it is just one of the many tools used to divide and rule the people of this planet while enriching the controlling entities. While you lot are whining here about whose religion/race/favourite sports team/political party is more persecuted, you are blinded to the bigger picture and by posting here and involving myself in pointless debate I am just as guilty I know so flame me allready but maybe just one person will sit up and wake up and we'll be closer to the square root of 1% of the population and critical mass in cosciousness. Amen

  • Cybermatix - 2010-12-17 22:56

    @ Psalm I have lived and worked in the USA and Canada for many years, and your statement that the USA is a secular country is true in theory but definitely not true in practice. A recent poll (2008) showed that about 80% of Americans profess to be Christians and about 45% profess to be "creationists" that believe that the earth was created 5000 years ago, Noah had dinosaurs on his ark, and the Great Flood created the Grand Canyon. These people vote, and specially in the South are politically very strong. The chances of being elected to president if you are not a Christian is virtually zero, and even being elected to office as a senator or representative is also negligible. If you happen to be an atheist, your chances are zero. The percentage of Christians in the US Congress is in the high 90's, and consists of mainly "protestant" persuasions. So Domestic and Foreign policy, including wars, is mainly dictated by the protestant Christian belief system that implies that anyone that believes differently than them is by definition wrong, God is on their (the correct) side, and whatever they decide to do in the world is God's will. Everything is relative, but in essence just as Saudi Arabia is a Muslim Country, the USA is pretty much a Christian country. And I must say that I am quite surprised that you and your little fan club don't seem to understand this very simple and obvious (and relatively well known) fact. Unless you live on a different planet than the rest of us. Do you?

      lmduplessis - 2010-12-18 01:27

      Asi understand it, Saudi Arabia is classified as a Muslim country because it follows a form of Sharia Law, which is law as seen from the religeon's point of view. In other words, their Law is dictated by religeous figures in order to forward religeous views, and favours the religeon of choice (muslim, in this instance), such as no other religeon being openly practiced, that ALL women (be it muslim or not) must cover their faces ( i am still not sure why this should be nessicary, but probably the sight of a naked cheek drives muslim men wild with lust and passion) be they muslim or not, all the laws about conversion ect ect. In America, which you claim to be Christian, there are NO laws dictating how society in the USA has to act, specifically that they have to act in accordance to christian views and guidelines. The Laws there are laid for all people. You are not sent to jail for not going to church. You are not flogged for wearing modest clothes. you are not fined for working on a sunday. Thus i must conclude that you do not understand what the terms "Muslim" or "Christian" countries mean. Just having one or other religeion being the majority does not count. Having the religeion as PART OF YOUR LAW/GOVERMENT/CONSTITUTUIN makes you a religeious type country, and the USA is classified as secular because there are no Religeious type overtures in how they preform in goverment (except for various mentioning their trust in "God", which is pretty ambiguous in my opinion"

      cervezab - 2010-12-18 09:33

      @Imduplessis - About the clothing - it is a modern revived practice, 40 years ago Muslim women walked around without covering their face and even wore T-shirts on the street. During that same time woman in SA had to wear a hat while in church(I will not make a Christian sex drive remark as I find you remark offensive). These are all just stupid traditions that are made popular and unpopular as cultures and religions keep changing. In the USA, England there was a time where a woman's neck had to be covered while in public. In a democracy, majority rules, so what ever the religion of the majority, most probably their religion has the most power and influence and therefor dictate laws and government policies. Just because it is not written as law does not mean it is not

      Cybermatix - 2010-12-18 11:38

      @ lmduplessis You missed the point totally. I said that everything is relative. This means that even though Saudi Arabia is much more strict in the application of their "moral" laws than the USA, the relative concept is the same. I do not compare Saudi Arabia with the USA directly and do not speak to specific laws. The USA population is mostly Protestant Christian and Saudi Arabia is mostly Muslim. The concept is relativity. If you go and look closely you will find that the USA laws and legal system is based broadly on the Protestant Christian belief and value system. The point is, the USA is not a secular country, even though their constitution and founding documents says it is. If something is written in a country's constitution it doesn't mean it is so in practice. If you haven't noticed South Africa's constitution promises non-racialism. Yet some of the most basic laws in the country is racist. China's constitution promises freedom of speech. Tell that to the thousands of pro-democracy activists in jail, including the current Nobel prize winner. In this regard Saudi Arabia is more honest than the USA. Saudi Arabia states it is a Muslim country and it is. USA states it is a secular country but it isn't.

      Psalm - 2010-12-18 12:57

      @ Cybermatix Your comment makes no sense. The fact that people in US believe in "Creationism" does not mean that the laws of the US are not secular laws. Your claim regarding the % of Congressmen of Protestant persuasion is sheer grasping at straws. The US Constitution prohibits US Congress from making any law at touching the practice of religion. US law is based on separation of Church and state. That is easily proven by looking at US lawmaking processes. There is nothing to prove that US makes any decision based on the Bible. If US was indeed making such laws on the Christian principles, do you seriously think that pre-marital sex (for example) would fly? Do you think that Clinton would have any role to play in the Democratic Party? Being governed by Christian principles and Christian intergrity must be distiguished from having people claim "persuasion". US is a secular state- nothing more, nothing less. Yes, there is some Christian influence, but I doubt it drives the US army which recently burnt THOUSANDS of Bibles - yet they would NEVER burn the Koran. The US army clearly felt no respect for the Holy Bible and its contents- so how will its contents guide US military policy?

      Lanfear - 2010-12-20 11:55

      Excellent comment Cybermatix! @ Psalm [and others like Imduplessis]- it is really annoying that you are trying to sound rational and knowledgeable, yet with every sentence you show your ignorance. Secular laws means very little when all those who write and enforce the law(s) are of a single specific faith [Christianity in this case]. You claim that Christian prescriptions from the bible does not appear in government in the US? You should really talk to someone in the US you know. I have a couple of pagan friends in the US [I'm not a pagan myself] and they are having loads of problems. One of them lives in the so-called "bible belt" and it is ugly to hear how often she has suffered, for instance, her car being scratched repeatedly [it has a pagan sticker on], her child being ostracized at the so-called "secular" school, enforced prayer before school, Christians clamouring as far and wide as the national courts to get their creationism taught in SCIENCE class of all things! If the US is so secular, why is it that a man [or woman] who confess to being an atheist [or even another religion] will NEVER be elected as president? Thomas Jefferson for example, had to hide his agnosticism, it was only revealed after his death. Kennedy & Clinton were the only Roman Catholics ever to be elected, even though the RCC is Christian as well. And so forth...

  • exocist - 2010-12-17 23:07


      Worldwise - 2010-12-18 08:52

      Capitals on the internet is seen as bad manners and shouting. Stop shouting and I might read your post.

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 11:28

      One of your commandments is though shalt not judge. I think you are a in a spot of bother here.

      Cybermatix - 2010-12-18 11:52

      It also can indicate that your are ignorant of general internet usage rules and netiquette. If you want people to take your posts seriously I suggest you post using normal capitalization rules.

  • Johan - 2010-12-18 10:14

    I have never SEEN so much crap written in one day...Christian persecution Muslims and all the other stories ...then God does not exist....Americans killing Muslims......Everybody knows everything.....but but nobody and no one of you clever people got a here is what I have to say......Christ was on earth did some wonders and did not make money out of it like most of you would have done.....everybody today try to disprove that ....Mohammed was here nobody try's to DISPROVE that so Bhuda too and also the theory that we all came from nothing " BIG BANG''. For me I believe in God where as everybody else believe in what they want. Fact is if I am wrong all you guys got nothing to worry about and that's a what if I am right.... now then you've got a problem am I right????.... point is do not worry too much because most of you know for a fact that are right!!!!!!!he he he but if I'm right.. and all I had to do is have faith, no big job like becoming a specialist in what ever ..???????????

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 11:03

      There is nothing wrong with your belief Johan, each to his own. If you (or me) started killing people to force them to believe what we believe then there is a problem. The Pope, by his words, his just inciting anger, there is no point to what he said.

      Jimmy - 2010-12-20 13:47

      I am so sick of this stance to religeon: "What if you're wrong and God really deos exist?" So basically you believe in God because you're scared that he might exist and he'll punish you for not being a believer when you die? Either believe or don't, I don't care either way, but grow a pair and take a stance, don't just try to hedge your bets.

  • homo-sapiens - 2010-12-18 11:14

    The biggest problem is that people judge religions without even KNOWING anything about them. They do not even bother to INFORM themselves - but very quickly condemn a religion as BAD and as NOT FITTING well with the modern world. And that goes for ALL religions! As soon as it hits fanaticism, the sweet little line to insanity is crossed.

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 11:26

      What is religion? Religion basically uses peoples' fear of death and insignificance as a means of control. Laws, invented by men are taken as truths. Invisible men in the sky that know everything about you and yet don't bother to step in and stop child murder. Nice guy. Whether these stories come from ancient events such as alien visits or direct intervention from the 'creator' whatever that is, it still does not and cannot stop or hide the fact that we are insignificant and mean nothing. That is where religion is evil. It makes men think their lives and them have meaning beyond their immediate relationships. We mean zero. It is humbling and frightening and that is what people can't handle.

      Johan - 2010-12-18 12:43

      goyougoodthing......Man what can I say if you say we mean nothing and in the sentence worry about the life of kid.....what can a man say ....I certainly don't say the Pope is right, but you know it's so true about humans we just don't worry about others but ourselfs and in this proses we hurt people and destroy good intentions!!!!!!!

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 14:32

      Johan, you see for me the fact that we care about kids etc in spite of the utter irrelevance manifests the beauty of all of this. Doing something simply because it is right or good or just without any significance attached, without perhaps getting a foot into heaven's door is just super cool in my books. :-) I never said I don't believe in a Creator, I just don't know what that 'creator' means.

  • anelda.grove - 2010-12-18 13:55

    The Catholic Church is the origin of religious intolerance and violence.

      Tormore - 2010-12-18 15:11

      ok, so you're saying there was no religious intolerance and violence before the Catholics walked the earth ... *rolls eyes* you know, history did not start with the Catholics!

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 15:22

      No, they didn't invent intolerance but they sure perfected it.

      Tormore - 2010-12-18 15:55

      no religion is truely tolerant of other religions. Some are just less intolerant than others... actually, that's basic human nature ;-)

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-18 16:09

      That's why ALL RELIGION is bad. Ban the lot

      anelda.grove - 2010-12-18 17:47

      People were mainly peace loving pagans before Catholicism reared its ugly head. Not denying there was violence before the Catholics just that people did not kill in the name of the lord before then...

      Tieneke - 2010-12-20 13:13

      Intolerance stems from the fear of that we do not know or understand and it does not only apply to religion......

  • oxygen - 2010-12-18 19:21

    That pampered, baby-powdered little piece of red-robed fluff should get his sorry-ass out into the real world.

      oxygen - 2010-12-19 12:52

      Before you advise others on the forums to stop making stupid comments, here's a gentle reminder - the interpretation of words is in the eye of the beholder.

  • Tormore - 2010-12-18 22:08

    You REALLY should check on history before making stupid comments like that. Violence and killing in the name of God(s) has always happened. Romans, Greeks, Maya, to name just a few.

      oxygen - 2010-12-19 12:53

      Oh oopsie, Tormor, that comment was meant for you.

      Lanfear - 2010-12-20 11:49

      Excellent comment Cybermatix! @ Psalm [and others like Imduplessis]- it is really annoying that you are trying to sound rational and knowledgeable, yet with every sentence you show your ignorance. Secular laws means very little when all those who write and enforce the law(s) are of a single specific faith [Christianity in this case]. You claim that Christian prescriptions from the bible does not appear in government in the US? You should really talk to someone in the US you know. I have a couple of pagan friends in the US [I'm not a pagan myself] and they are having loads of problems. One of them lives in the so-called "bible belt" and it is ugly to hear how often she has suffered, for instance, her car being scratched repeatedly [it has a pagan sticker on], her child being ostracized at the so-called "secular" school, enforced prayer before school, Christians clamouring as far and wide as the national courts to get their creationism taught in SCIENCE class of all things! If the US is so secular, why is it that a man [or woman] who confess to being an atheist [or even another religion] will NEVER be elected as president? Thomas Jefferson for example, had to hide his agnosticism, it was only revealed after his death. Kennedy & Clinton were the only Roman Catholics ever to be elected, even though the RCC is Christian as well. And so forth...

      Lanfear - 2010-12-20 11:55

      Oops! Replied to the wrong comment! lol

      Lanfear - 2010-12-20 12:06

      What I really meant to reply to this comment was- The Romans and Greeks did NOT do violence, killing, war and conquest in the name of their pantheon of gods [I don't know enough about the Mayan religious practices to comment on them]. Neither did they [Romans & Greeks] ever try to enforce their religion on anyone else. The Romans especially were probably the most tolerant masters of conquerered territory where it concerned customs, traditions and religions. Most were allowed to keep their own. Only when public disturbances and rebellions ensued, did they clamp down hard. Same arguement when saying that communists killed millions. They never killed people in the name of ATHEISM, but in the name of political ideology and quest for power. That a few of them were atheist [and believe me, there were only a minimal minority] is irrelevant. OTOH, the Abrahamic religions such as Christianity and Islam, have killed and still kill in the name of their religions. Even if it is a political tool, they still did and do it *in the name of god*. That is a huge difference. They also continue to try and enforce their believes onto others.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-20 19:15

      @Lanfear – so you’re saying the fact that Hitler, the most famous tyrant of all, was an atheist is irrelevant? Nietzsche made the statement that “Equality is a lie concocted by inferior people who arrange themselves in herds to overpower those who are naturally superior to them. The morality of 'equal rights' is a herd morality, and because it opposes the cultivation of superior individuals, it leads to the corruption of the human species”. Hitler studied Nietzsche’s nihilistic philosophy of the “super race”, which was atheistic, and personally presented copies to Stalin, another brigand. Both these men and their action were perfect examples of the natural outworking of thier atheistic philosophy - Hitler’s strive for the super race killed millions, and you’re simply brushing this atheistic philosophy aside as irrelevant? It’s important to know that what Hitler, Stalin and others did was the natural outworking of the philosophical worldviews, but not so with Christianity. What was done in the name of Christ during the Crusades would hardly be condoned by Christ (the Founder) Himself. That is not the natural outworking of what Christ taught. @Lanfear – so you’re saying the fact that Hitler, the most famous tyrant of all, was an atheist is irrelevant? Nietzsche made the statement that “Equality is a lie concocted by inferior people who arrange themselves in herds to overpower those who are naturally superior to them. The morality of 'equal rights' is a herd morality, and because it opposes the cultivation of superior individuals, it leads to the corruption of the human species”. Hitler studied Nietzsche’s nihilistic philosophy of the “super race”, which was atheistic, and personally presented copies to Stalin, another brigand. Both these men and their action were perfect examples of the natural outworking of atheistic philosophy - Hitler’s strive for the super race killed millions, and you’re simply brushing this atheistic philosophy aside as irrelevant? It’s important to know that what Hitler, Stalin and others did was the natural outworking of the philosophical worldviews, but not so with Christianity. What was done in the name of Christ during the Crusades would hardly be condoned by Christ (the Founder) Himself. That is not the natural outworking of what Christ taught. About Christians “enforcing” their beliefs on others – have you read any of the anti-theistic billboards erected by Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennet and co?

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-21 05:48

      @stifflerg1. If you are going to talk about history and evil tyrants go and read a history book, read about the christian crusades, read about the torture of thousands by christians then you will see evil my friend.

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-21 12:09

      @FreeMan2 – lets do that then. The Crusaders did some of the most atrocious acts in history. Very few Christians i know would condone what they did and neither would Christ Himself. But its important to judge a religion by its founder not its followers only. There’s no premium that could be placed on a human life and hopefully we’re not trivializing the millions who lost theirs by comparing statistics. Let’s see how many people were killed in the name of humanity? In the Russian civil war 9 million, Stalin’s regime 20 million, 1st world war humanity killed 15 million, 2nd world war 55 million, Chinese civil war 2.5 million, PRC Mao Zedong 40 million, China 1917-1920 800 thousand, Mexico 1910-1920 1 million, Korean war 2.8 million, Rwanda 2.35 million, Cambodia 1.65 million…. the list goes on and on and on…

      FreeMan2 - 2010-12-22 04:24

      @stifflerg1. So you can quote numbers, but I am not sure what your point is. You say Hitler was immoral because he is athiest, I say christians crusaders were immoral becuase the are Christian. The bible infact promotes war, let me back up it up with evidence.In the Old Testament, God ordered the Israelites to “take vengeance on the Midianites for the Israelites” (Numbers 31:2). Deuteronomy 20:16-17 declares, “However, in the cities of the nations the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes. Completely destroy them…as the LORD your God has commanded you.” Also, 1 Samuel 15:18 says, “Go and completely destroy those wicked people, the Amalekites; make war on them until you have wiped them out.” Obviously God is not against all war. Jesus is always in perfect agreement with the Father (John 10:30), so we cannot argue that war was only God’s will in the Old Testament. God does not change (Malachi 3:6; James 1:17). Do you not think this why the crusades happened ? Does this not sound like promoting war and hate ? How is different from a jihad ?

      stifflerg1 - 2010-12-23 15:16

      @FreeMan2 – that’s is a very good point. My point was that I don’t agree with any of the atrocities done in the name of Christ, but I find it highly hypocritical and duplicitous for anti-theists, evolutionists, etc. to constantly point out what’s been done in the name of Christianity while conveniently neglecting what’s been done in the name of humanity. Have you heard of the “Just War” theory? If someone breaks into your home and threatens your family, will you not do whatever necessary in order to protect your family? If this should happen to you, and I truly hope it doesn’t, and you end up disabling the intruder – can I then call you a war mongering intolerant xenophobe?

  • Frank - 2010-12-19 09:12

    Wow, People have a lot to say about this issue. Let me clarify something In Revelation It talks about the false religion that will sit on Seven hills. Any guess which church sits on seven hills. Yes a lollipop to the one with there hand up. Rome (Vatican) hmmmmm.

      homo-sapiens - 2010-12-19 10:46

      Oh Frank, oh Frank ... my dear, dear boy! I am guessing that the Illuminati are "A Big Thing" for you too? And that you've not done an awful lot of reading ... (forgive me, for I was born to a "false religion"!) You're premising an "argument" on the contents of a collection of metaphors and folk recollections which was put together by ... oh ... CURSES ... by those whom you feel are part of the "false religion" from the Church of The Seven Hills? Let me simplify it for you: You use evidence from a wonky set of tales, written by a disparate bunch of reprobates ... to show that those SAME people are from a "false religion"? Man, you need a little help ...

      Frank - 2010-12-19 11:22

      The bible which you have probably not read at all is true

      Frank - 2010-12-19 11:28

      Maybe check out

      homo-sapiens - 2010-12-19 11:39

      Ahhh ... thank you, Frank! You have truly made my Sunday one to remember and chuckle about. Now, remember, it's a DANGEROUS world out there in the Interweb ... full of unbelievers and nasty people out to get you! As for "probably not read", no, I have managed perhaps rather more reading of said happy collection of allegorical folk tales than you have. But then, we're not out to wave d**ks in the breeze, are we? Frankie ... dear boy, please develop an actual, reasoned argument instead of dumbing right back down to kindergarten-level trivia. You're probably a nice fellow - maybe even sincere in your beliefs. But you really ought to research before asserting ;-) Go in the Peace of The Flying Spaghetti Monster (Church of)

      Frank - 2010-12-19 11:56

      @homo-sap... I see you are totally under the lie from the ruler of the age. Satan himself could have written a little more because he knows time is running out. but it is ok. God is true and the word which he spoke is true. You have not done the research from scripture to current world events. You will be amazed. Do you understand that Israel back in the land means something. Have you read ezekial 38-39. do you know who the nations he speaks of are? If you do not believe in the Son of God Jesus Christ. You have some Bigger problems that being part of a church group. If you will not believe in the Son of God you are already lost. Salvation is in Jesus Christ. Not in any other name, or religion. God is not into religion, he want a relationship with you personally. But a Christ rejecting world will have problems.. Soon

      homo-sapiens - 2010-12-19 12:22

      Truly, like swatting a fly with a Buick ... it really isn't fair on you. Go well, fella ... peace and may the Lord be with you.

      homo-sapiens - 2010-12-19 12:59

      Frank, old bean - my last post may be read completely literally. And I really DO wish you well (no sarcasm whatsoever intended). If the Flying Spag Monster has you curious, you may wish to read up on the origins of this satire. Tiny, tiny correction - "Bible" is written with a capital "B" as it's a proper noun. Peace and a blessed Christmas to you.

      Frank - 2010-12-19 13:10

      Yes To you and all. A blessed Christmas

  • jwill - 2010-12-19 13:49

    Sociology: Us vs them; in-group vs out-group; topdog vs underdog. Since the dawn of age human beings have gravitated towards affiliation with a "group" they deem to represent themselves. Ethnicity, socio-economic status, geographic distribution and religion (as a cultural expression of faith) has been the biggest "labels" according to which people have classified themselves. These factors have been used extensively by people to "defend" the autonomy of their own group. Point is: any religion (depending on where the person is and when in time) will be subjected to "persecution"....which is wrong. The Pope's last comment about religious intolerance is the bottomline: it's thrive in the world and human nature will probably never allow it to dissapate.

  • Rhiannon - 2010-12-19 15:16

    The Pope forgets the time when his church held ultimate power. His predessesors could command great armies to go out and rape and pillage. People and nations were made to bow their knees to him or be killed in the most brutal way possible. People were kept stupid and in abject awe and fear of him and his church during the Dark Ages. How times have changed!! Today he is nothing but a whineging old fart. Bleating on about this and that. A senile and useless piece of garbage who's time is swiftly running out. Only the dumbest and foolish on this planet still pay his sinister organisation any mind. A pit of paedofiles and sickoes. May they all rot and wither.

  • Chocalate1 - 2010-12-19 19:10

    No Mr Pope, true suffering are those boys your "Holy fathers" are abusing behind the pulpit.

  • REALIST - 2010-12-20 10:50

    Whatever... you just keep on telling yourself that! Maybe he's talking about all the molested catholic boys...

  • Google58 - 2010-12-20 11:12


  • Think101 - 2010-12-20 12:17

    Psalm - go out and get some fresh air all your book reading and wiki-searching is making you bitter and twisted. Geez so much anger from so many corners. Religion is a personal thing between you and your God. Whomever that may be. This forum is being used for religion - bashing and for poor fools like Psalm to write long- winded drivel so that he can impress people like stacey dejager. At the end of the day, no matter if we are an Atheist, Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindu etc we will only know who was right when we die.. So go out and enjoy the sunshine, BECAUSE NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE TRUTH, EVERYONE JUST WANTS TO BE RIGHT

      Psalm - 2010-12-20 13:38

      You must surely be a beneficiary of the "pass one, pass all" education policy.

      ir8m8 - 2010-12-20 16:27

      god is a little boy with an ant farm...

  • mofo - 2010-12-20 13:10

    That Vatican are responsible for millions of deaths because of their policy on the use of condoms and their support of Hitler’s Nazi regime. Christianity, and Catholathism in particular is the worst thing to have happened to mankind.

  • Joy - 2010-12-20 13:39

    oh YAWN

  • GVA - 2010-12-20 13:45

    Religion divides people for proof just read above comments. As far as I am concerned its all a load of crap!

      Joy - 2010-12-21 08:27

      hear hear Religion divides people, a common interest unites them

  • arshad0smany - 2010-12-20 16:08

    The pope has most definitely lost touch or has never been in touch with reality.He should be dropped off in OCCUPIED PALESTINE for a month, specifically Gaza then let's see what he has to say!!!!

  • ir8m8 - 2010-12-20 16:15

    oh please, the catholic church has more blood on its hand than all the other religions combined. to recap: 1.the crusades (I and II) - est 1 million innocent men, woman and children 2.In 1209, Pope Innocent III (also here) called for a crusade to exterminate the Cathar people of France 3. In 1233, Pope Gregory IX encouraged the extermination of the Stedinger people of Friesland 4. The Inquisition (including the spanish) - killed an est 350 000 5.witch hunts of the late 16th-18th centuries - est 1 million 6. the peasants war 7. The fransiscian's and their aid to nazi croation genocide 8. the Torquemada, by the dominicans est 1 million deaths 9. the jesuits (witch hunts) and the masacre of the people of Ascuntion. 10. an est 17 million slaves were killed by Europeans and Americans, the church did squat. Infact the church officially supported slavery in 1839 and 1866 what makes the statements more pathetic than ever is that the church has not only beatified but also canonised figures, that we today would clasify war criminals. one perfect example would be pope pius Xii, pope during the hollocast (not yet beatified but will be soon). The 1st treaty Hitler signed was with pius Xii, literally days after hitler came to power.

      ir8m8 - 2010-12-20 16:24

      And my final comment, and i choose to believe in myself. Is that Religion is the opium of the masses (Karl Marx), and, He who holds the key to heaven rules the world.

  • CharlieChap - 2010-12-20 16:51

    I think its time for a Crusade again. Hell, we may even be successfull THIS time arround. Where's ol' Bush - he can lead us!

  • ksgjackrichard - 2010-12-20 17:27

    I can't stand people who think THEIR religion is superior than anyone else's. No matter what religion you are, don't assume you know other's unless you have studied them yourself properly! I say ban all religions!! Most of them are like cults anyway. People cant think for themselves and use religion as a crutch!

  • Philosopher - 2010-12-20 18:53

    Does anyone still listen to this idiot? Hell let's all hail the queen while we're at it. Is my calendar wrong or are we living in the 21st century?

  • Lesley - 2010-12-20 22:04

    @leroux.valk - What victim mentality? Me, on the pope's side? I'm not even a Christian. I'm on the side of people who are entitled to practise their religion and follow their faith as they see fit. I merely abhor the opinions of ignorant people who get a kick out of insulting another person's religion or their religious leaders. It is unnecessary. I don't understand why anyone would want to undermine another's religion. My best reasoning to understand it is that it's probably borne out of ignorance. @slg – You don't seem to know much about the Catholic Church except that which is fed to you via the media, nor do you seem to know much about the present-day persecution of Christians. If you did know this, you would understand how hurtful your remark is to many who will read it.

  • Adenaan Domingo - 2010-12-21 08:43

    There were more muslims killed in the Iraqi bombings throughout the year and included a number of mosques being bombed. Also intolerence shown to Muslim women and their dress code.

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