Sunday, February 20, 2011

Mommy, is this a Church, or a Mosque?

First let me say, I am a Christian. I believe in and try to live a Christian life. I attempt daily to love, and pray for, my fellow man. (I most often find myself in the same dilemma as Linus, from the Peanuts comic strip, I love Mankind, it's PEOPLE I can't stand!) Having said that all that, I am not, at my core, Evangelical.
I struggle enough with MY life that I do not try to convert others to my thoughts and beliefs. I do on the other hand again, help anyone who needs help. Sometimes that is monetary help. I've even said before, that I don't have my CCH, JUST for MY protection. Being both a Christian and an old hippy, I completely believe in doing what I can to help, nurture and generally take care of humanity. I do not limit that to white, middle-class, Christians who drive the same color truck I do, as do some people we all see daily.
But I have limits to what I consider 'help'. My helping someone will always take into consideration the general well being of the rest of us. I don't 'help' a drunk by going to get them a case of liquor, and I wouldn't loan them my car! I wouldn't help a paranoid schizophrenic protect himself by buying him a gun. I wouldn't help a newly formed group of Muslims by loaning them my church. I wouldn't help someone...

WHAT? Go back to that Muslim thing? Why? Is there a huge difference there from the rest of what I wrote? OK, I'll go back.

I wouldn't help a newly formed group of Muslims by loaning them my church. But Rev Steve Stone disagrees with me.
Steve Stone from Heartsong Church in Cordova, TN is under fire. You see, he recently invited a local muslim congregation to use their sanctuary as a makeshift mosque during Ramadan while their new Islamic Center was under construction.

Seems that Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Arlington, VA is doing kind of the same thing... inviting a local muslim congregation to use church space for their Friday prayers.

According to Cathy Lynn Grossman, the religion editor for USA today, both pastors say that this is a way of 'living out the way of life Jesus calls Christians to live.'

Not everyone thinks this is a good idea, including Pat Robertson (who publicly spoke out against it) or Jason Hood, who wrote a column condemning this over at Christianity Today.
Here's a bit from the Christianity Today piece:

Both of the pastors allowing Muslim worship on their property appeal to the love required of Christians as an authoritative guide for their decision-making.

The theological issues at play come down to whether Jesus' love command also requires leaders to avoid causing undue stumbling; or, as Wesley put it, the command to do good works includes avoiding causing or leading others to harm, whether they are believers or unbelievers. Does facilitation of false worship violate the love command?

Personally I think it's wrong. For a number of reasons. First and foremost, and as far as I know, All religious buildings are CONSECRATED places of worship. That, to each religion means different things. But each building was built to Worship ONE God. Even Hindus, a religion with, literally, millions of Gods, doesn't generally build temples or altars to but one at a time. That area being consecrated to that ONE God.
Given that, IMHO, renting or loaning your CHRISTIAN CHURCH to Muslims is wrong.
And I'm that rare American Christian who thinks that Muslims DO worship the One True God. BUT, they've been pulled away by the Devil, to be used as a tool of evil. Of course I'm also a believer, who was raised Roman Catholic, who thinks Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry and Ted Kennedy fall into that same category, and except for Teddy obviously, their religious beliefs are no less dangerous to America than radical Muslims!
Let the Mosqueless Muslims do what Christians do when they start out sans facilities, rent a school, a restaurant or a bowling alley for worship.
Read the Comments at both links. They are interesting for sure.


Cowpill said...

I believe that love and forgiveness will be the downfall of christianity. This turn the other cheek mentality is allowing Islam to take over the planet. The relofion of Muhammed is not a religion of peace, but of violence and oppression. I for one am done with forgiveness. I am not tolerant of Islam and it's false Idol. Muhammad can kiss my behind.

Allah Crack-Bar said...


Schteveo said...

I'd hate to be a moderate, well educated, western living Muslim Cowpill. They get grouped in with radicals by us and thrown in with us by radicals.

But I agree with the turning of cheeks. I simply do not believe the PCascist ideal that turning the other cheek equates as the same as the spreading of cheeks.

Turning the other cheek means not to respond harshly when slighted or mocked or spoken harshly to or about. Turning the other cheek does NOT mean you aren't supposed to defend yourself, or your family or those who can't defend themselves if you are threatened with physical harm.

I heard this story on FOX Sunday initially. And one of the comments was something like, "...I thought we were supposed to convert unbelievers, not help them worship falsely."

I'm guessing Rev Stone will lease the Banquet Hall to the local Strip Club if their facility burns down?

alan said...

My original thought was "good on 'em" and that it was the "Christian" thing to do. I thought this because I have been to many "churches" that couldn't afford a building, and rented a space.

Absolutely right, if they need a Mosque, they should rent something that has not already been dedicated or consecrated to another God.

Spider said...

Personally, i dislike religious zealots no matter what their religion, whether they're trying to convert cannibals in the Amazon, beating themselves bloody with chains in the middle east, or trying to push their religion on me. Christian zealots are known for doing some strange things, (like sailing into pirate waters to hand out Bibles?) but offering space, help, or whatever, to the followers of a cult who believe all non-Mooselambs must be killed, especially Christians, is kinda off-the-wall in my book.

I'm also not a subcriber to the turn-the-other-cheek philosophy. In fact, i'm more of a do it unto others (before) they do it unto me believer. It's one of the ways i've managed to keep my cheeks.

If we as a species were capable of rational thought and discussion, which we're not, we might have a conversation one day about the differences between religion, and the love of God. Until that time, people will continue to use both as an excuse, a phony excuse, to kill and be killed.

blue said...

has anyone ever heard of mulsims loaning their mosque to christians or jews for services???

Schteveo said...

ding, ding, ding, more callers...WE HAVE A WINNER!!!

blue, you got it. I avoided saying that and waited to see who'd go there first. Show me ONE instance of Muslims 'loaning' a Mosgue to Christians or Jews for worship, and I'll stand down. Hell, the majority of Muslims want Christians and Jews out of Jerusalem because it's a Holy City!! They don't want to share a city, I'm certain they ain't sharin' no sanctuaries!!!

Anonymous said...

Nuke'm all. All just houses of Fanatics.