The Synod of the Bishops for the Middle East : A Lebanese bishop vigorously denounces the Koran

Source: FSSPX News

The first Special Assembly for the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops, held at the Vatican from October 10-24, was a meeting of representatives from the seven Eastern Catholic Churches on the topic: The Catholic Church in the Middle East: Communion and Witness. “Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul(Acts 4:32).

A Lebanese bishop vigorously denounces the Koran

Archbishop Raboula Antoine Beylouni, a Lebanese bishop of the Syriac Rite, used the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East as an opportunity to object to the Koran in a written intervention (not read aloud in Synod Hall) that was made public on October 22.

The Koran “commands the imposition of religion by force, with the sword,” the Lebanese bishop declared. He explained: “The Koran allows a Muslim to hide the truth from a Christian, and to speak and act contrary to what he thinks and believes,” and “the Koran gives a Muslim the right to judge Christians and to kill them for the Jihad (the holy war).” Thus, “Muslims do not recognize religious freedom, either for themselves or for others.”

Archbishop Beylouni furthermore emphasized that in the Koran, “men and women are not equal, not even in marriage itself, where the man can take several wives and can divorce at his pleasure.” In addition, he highlighted the presence in the holy book of Islam of “contradictory verses which annul others,” giving a Muslim “the possibility of using one or the other to his advantage.” Thus, a Muslim may say about a Christian “that he is humble and pious and believes in God, just as he can treat him as impious, apostate and idolatrous.”

“The Koran inculcates in the Muslim pride in having the only true and complete religion,” the Lebanese prelate went on to say, since a Muslim “is part of the privileged nation, and speaks the language of God, the language of Paradise, the Arabic language.” He then added that a Muslim pursues dialogue “with a sense of superiority, and with the certitude of being victorious.” This is why the discussion “of dogmas” between Christians and Muslims proves impossible.

Although “faced with all these interdictions [prohibitions]” coming from the Koran, Archbishop Beylouni maintained that dialogue between Muslims and Christians should certainly not be suppressed. The Lebanese prelate noted that “themes that can be discussed should be chosen carefully” and that “well-trained Christians… who are courageous and pious, wise and prudent” should be chosen as well.

Special Synod of the Bishops for the Middle East :

An ayatollah at the Synod
Presentation of the Synod
Opening of the Synod
Report from Rabbi David Rosen
Intervention of the Shiite ayatollah Seyyed Mostafa Mohaghegh Damad
The final message of the Synod Fathers
The synod’s final propositions
The close of the Synod