The Covenants Initiative

Interesting initiative from John Andrew Morrow, based on texts of Muhammad calling on Muslims to protect and defend Christians. He’s written a new book, The Covenants  of the Prophet Muhammad with the Christians of the World.

Did Jesus Drink Alcohol?

The Muslim world can’t understand how Christians can claim the name of Jesus and yet drink wine. They can’t imagine that any prophet would condone wine. Samuele Bacchiocchi addresses the question of whether Jesus drank fermented wine here, in a chapter from his book, Wine and the Bible.

“Census Sabbath”

Houston mayor Annise Parker has called for a “Census Sabbath” this weekend, asking religious leaders to proclaim her message of the necessity of filling out census forms. As a pastor, when I teach about church/state relations, I affirm our obligation to be good citizens, to give Caesar the things that belong to him. Obeying the…

The Pope and the Jews

Pope Benedict had some remarks yesterday for the Jewish community. At this time of your most solemn celebration, I feel particularly close, precisely because of what Nostra Aetate calls Christians to remember always: that the Church “received the revelation of the Old Testament through the people with whom God in His inexpressible mercy concluded the…

The Vatican and the Jews

The Vatican has issued an explanatory statement on the revised Good Friday prayer for the 1962 Roman Missal (see also John Allen): Following the publication of the new Prayer for the Jews for the 1962 edition of the Roman Missal, some groups within the Jewish community have expressed disappointment that it is not in harmony…

“A Common Morality for the Global Age”

Report of a symposium at Catholic University of America. The gathering was the result of a request to Catholic University from Pope Benedict XVI in October 2004, before he became pope. It drew thinkers from several religious traditions and experts in philosophy, theology, ethics, politics and religion from several nations. In requesting the symposium the…

One Way Dialogue

Pope Benedict XVI will be having an interfaith meeting at the John Paul II Cultural Center in DC, but don’t expect any dialogue. This won’t be an opportunity for him to hear from Jews, Muslims, Hindus, and others about religion in America, or their relations with Catholics. Nope. Only one person will be talking, as…

Magdi Allam as Mythic Hero

Rod Dreher sees Magdi Allam and thinks of Ronald Reagan, especially his approach to the Soviet Union. He cites “Spengler” in Asia Times. A self-described revolution in world affairs has begun in the heart of one man. He is the Italian journalist and author Magdi Cristiano Allam, whom Pope Benedict XVI baptized during the Easter…

Jewish Anti-Christian Prayers

National Catholic Reporter writes about Jewish anti-Christian prayers. A liberal Catholic priest says they should be changed. A rabbi responds, “Nobody should have to change their prayers for anyone else.”

Interfaith “Dinner Dialogues” in Houston

Houston Chronicle reports on last night’s “Amazing Faiths Dinner Dialogue,” in which over 800 participated. Interfaith dialogue is most alive in Houston at the grass-roots level. On the grander scale there are a couple of things that go on, like the social ministries of Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston, and the pulpit exchange sponsored by…

Interfaith Dialogue in St. Louis and New York

The Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis is angry at Rabbi Susan Talve, senior rabbi at Central Reform Congregation, for hosting an illicit ordination of two Catholic women. Other Jewish leaders are distancing themselves from the synagogue. NCR; St. Louis Post-Dispatch. I certainly understand Archbishop Burke’s anger. This is rather insensitive on the part of Talve.…

Cardinal George and the Jews

John Allen gives context, and update: Speaking of cardinals, two weeks ago I interviewed Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, who will likely soon take over as president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Our conversation was wide-ranging, and at one point I asked the cardinal for a reaction to Jewish criticism of the…

Cardinal George Asks Jews to Edit Talmud

Cardinal Francis George says maybe the traditional Good Friday prayers of the Tridentine mass need to be edited–and also says that sensitivity is a two way street, and that the Jews should edit the Talmud to remove statements against Jesus. “It does work both ways. Maybe this is an opening to say, ‘Would you care…

More on the MP and the Jews

Fr. Thomas Rausch of Loyola Marymount comments on the interfaith implications of the motu proprio of Pope Benedict XVI permitting greater use of the 1962 Missale Romanum. On the other hand, here is a “Traditionalist Catholic” article, originally published in Seattle Catholic. The author maintains that the Latin phrase “perfidus Iudaeus”, found in the Good…

That Good Friday Prayer

Report that Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone says the 1962 Good Friday prayers could be revised. Update: Catholic News Service has more: “It is a formula,” Cardinal Bertone said. “The problem can be studied, and it could be decided that all those celebrating the Mass in the Catholic Church, according to the old missal or the new…