Nigerian Bishop Oliver Dashe Doeme has just announced the most devastating strategy to thwart the Islamist world takeover that’s been heard in years.
Vatican Radio writes:
Drawing inspiration from the First Reading of the Act of the Apostles which tells of the stoning and martyrdom of Stephen, the first Christian martyr, the Pope remembered “our brothers whose throats have been slit on the beaches of Libya”, he spoke of “the young boy who was burnt alive by his companions because he was Christian”, he recalled “the migrants who were thrown from their boat into open sea” because, they too, were Christians.
The Pope is very vocal about the now widespread slaughter of Christians, praising their courage and their faith, and comparing them to past martyrs and saints like Stephen.
“God’s Word is always rejected by some. God’s Word is inconvenient when you have a stone heart, when you have a pagan heart, because God’s Word asks you to go ahead trying to satisfy your hunger with the bread which Jesus spoke of. In the history of the Revelation many martyrs have been killed for their faith and loyalty towards God’s Word, God’s Truth”.
Pope Francis continued comparing the martyrdom of Stephen to that of Jesus: he too “died with that Christian magnanimity of forgiveness, praying for his enemies’.
And those who persecuted the prophets – the Pope pointed out – believed they were giving glory to God; they thought they were being true to God’s doctrine.
“Today – the Pope said – I would like to remember that the true history of the Church is that of the Saints and the martyrs,” of so many who were persecuted and killed by those who thought they possessed the ‘truth’- whose heart was corrupted by ‘truth’:
Now, what does Pope Francis mean by that? Did the truth have some corrupting effect on the hearts of those persecutors? I thought they became corrupted by lies, or worldliness or other temptations.
“In these days how many Stephens there are in the world! Let us think of our brothers whose throats were slit on the beach in Libya; let’s think of the young boy who was burnt alive by his companions because he was a Christian; let us think of those migrants thrown from their boat into the open sea by other migrants because they were Christians; let us think – just the day before yesterday – of those Ethiopians assassinated because they were Christians… and of many others. Many others of whom we do not even know and who are suffering in jails because they are Christians… The Church today is a Church of martyrs: they suffer, they give their lives and we receive the blessing of God for their witness”.
Around the world in places like Nigeria, Christians slaughtered by Muslims are Catholics, but in most of the Middle East they are schismatic separated Christians. They are more faithful and virtuous than many Roman Catholics, but they are still not united to the Church to which St. Stephen belonged. Where we may be removed through sin and false catechesis, they are separated in a different way.
Their churches vary in teaching from the Truth in matters like marriage and authority. This is heresy, and heresy like any other sin committed in ignorance or not, is never right. The Pope makes it seem like it’s all one Truth and one Church; as if it didn’t matter.
Will all non-Catholic men and woman who choose to confess Christ in the face of death go to Heaven? They may be ahead of the rest of us, but what if they’ve lived distorted misguided lives? What if, like most Protestants, they’ve rejected the Sacraments? At what point are they dying for something that is not really the Truth, but they nevertheless consider Christian? Pope Francis seems to believe they still die for the Truth anyway.
Islam itself was born of the Arian Heresy. They can’t technically be called Christians but that misused word can be a pretty low bar. The Qur’an is full of references to Jesus and Mary. Are Muslims martyrs when they kill each other?
Can Mormons be martyrs?
Were the Yazidi’s martyrs? They died for being Yazidis, another form of NOT Muslim. Not enough, right? But Protestantism is.
Either way, isn’t Pope Francis muddying already black waters here by constantly holding up Protestants killed by Muslims as examples of Catholic martyrs? These brave Christians are dead now. The rest of us have to live on with true examples of men and women who were actually Catholic and died for the Christ’s Church. Must we underestimate the necessity of true unity with the Church Militant at every turn, dropping important truths and picking up heresies here and there as we go along in one big ‘ecumenism of blood’ (whatever that means)?
The Pope plays so loose with hard Catholic concepts in an effort to distort! Oscar Romero is made martyr because undefined right-wingers shot him at Mass ending his nationwide alignment with Communist guerillas, i mean, ‘the poor.’
And now we have special ‘hidden martyrs.’
The Pope also pointed out that there are also many “hidden martyrs: those men and women who are faithful to the voice of the Spirit and who are searching for new ways and paths to help their brothers better love God”.
He said they are often viewed with suspicion, vilified and persecuted by so many modern ‘Sanhedrins’ who think they are the possessors of truth.
This sounds familiar. I think we’ve found something that’s definitely NOT a martyr in FrancisChurch. It’s an actual Catholic!