Sunday, August 20, 2006

Inter-religious Tensions

The Papal lecture at the Meeting with Representatives of the Sciences 12 September, 2006 at Regensburg, University is dominating religious commentary and inciting anger and protest among some Islamic communities. Here are a few helpful articles I have found from local and international sources:

Pope Benedict and Islam. Pope Backlash Deals Blow to Interfaith Ties – “The enraged response to the pope's speech last week, in which he quoted a 14th century Byzantine emperor who regarded teachings of Muhammad as "evil and inhuman," has dealt a stinging blow to decades of efforts by the Roman Catholic Church and others to ease tensions and open lines of communication between Muslims.”

Pope Benedict XVI and Islam – “… it is regrettable that in the midst of a well-worked out (of course) formal speech at the University of Regensburg in Germany, his old academic turf, the pope lapsed for a moment and did what we tenured folk sometimes do--and remember, the pope has lifetime tenure--we come up with an allusion that gets us in trouble, let a side point take center stage or fail to count the cost of a remark.” (Martin E. Marty, professor emeritus at the University of Chicago Divinity School.)

Australia's moderate Muslims a sign of hope, Pell says
Pope’s Islamic stumble baffles the experts (Eureka Street 19-Sep-2006 By Daniel Madigan)

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Dec 2006 Update: Date: 2006-12-20
Benedict XVI's Regensburg Address Hailed
REGENSBURG, Germany, DEC. 20, 2006 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI's lecture at Regensburg has been chosen "Address of the Year" in the German language. The decision was made by the Seminar der Allgemeine Rhetorik, the renowned School of General Rhetoric of the University of Tuebingen. According to this honor, one of the most prestigious prizes in the German language, the Sept. 12 address "is magisterially constructed in its direct composition" and multileveled. The school defended the "courage and determination with which the Pope produced his address, without the disposition to please and be accommodating, which often passes as dialogue." Many news media, taking out of context a quotation of Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus, presented the address as a condemnation of Islam. The jury, however, insisted that the address was "in reality about the relationship between reason and faith and affirmation of the Christian conviction that to act according to reason corresponds to the very nature of God."
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