One of the last unprotected classes in the world is believing Christians. There is much lament rightly expressed over discrimination against other religious, ethnic and various protected groups but it is usually open seasons on Christians with a special hatred reserved for the Catholic Church. It is “alright” to use ugly stereotypes and hateful imagery regarding Christians. Unsympathetic simplifications of our doctrine are common as are ugly labels such as “reactionary, hateful, homophobic, intolerant, backward and rigid.” The President recently insisted that the name of Jesus be covered over at Georgetown while he spoke there no one cried foul (even at Georgetown! 🙁 ). No one would ever dare suggest that holy symbols be covered over at a mosque or synagogue. But it is open season on Christians. Perhaps it is because we seldom speak out against things such as this.
A rather interesting development along these lines took place at the World Conference on Racism. A Russian Orthodox Delegate to the conference actually suggested that there may be such a thing as hatred against Christians. He chided the other delegates for saying nothing about what he termed “Christianophobia” while at the same time denouncing many other forms of hatred. It seems a long overdue observation and thanks are due to this courageous delegate. More about this story at Gloria TV:
4 Replies to “Christianophobia?”
President Obama was making a policy speech at Georgetown. My understanding is that when he does a policy speech off the the White House grounds, he prefers an American flag backdrop. There may have been a request from the White House to cover a school’s symbols but this request was not particulary aimed at Christian symbols or the cross. Somehow, this request was twisted by the rightwing press into an attack by Obama on Christianity. Unfortunately, this post has adopted this interpretation.
Yes, Christianity is under attack in certain areas of the world. Iraq and India are good examples, but this is a problem shared by religious minorities across the world. However, one should be careful to distinguish between real persecution and paranoia. Paranoia is not a Christian virtue.
Yes, I am not sure as to the actual intent of the White House. My larger concern is why Georgetown would agree to do such a thing. Basic Christianity 101 says that when anyone asks you to suppress the Name of Jesus for any reason whatsoever, intentional or not, you say what the Apostles did in Acts when they were told not to use or mention the name of Jesus: “We can in no wise do such a thing for we must obey God rather than Man.” Had Georgetown been less obsequious (for human honors) they might have politely indicated to the White House the implications of such a covering over and respectfully declined to do so.
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I am deeply uneasy concerning the next election. When I consider what is occuring in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Middle East (not to mention the U.S. economy) we seriously must have a strong leader. I’m not at all convinced that Barack Obama or any of the Republican candidates thus far have the experience or skills necessary to do the job the way it needs to be accomplished. Being president of the United States is an incredibly challenging job. Do you think there is someone out there with the experience, skill, and moral courage to do the job?
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