Since the 19th century, Germany’s Catholics and Protestants have paid church taxes in order to fund the churches and schools of their faith. Now, politicians in Europe’s largest country are considering extending the scheme to the Muslim population, as a way of reducing the influence of foreign countries and encouraging the growth of a “German Islam.”
A “mosque tax” would be modeled on the Kirchensteuer or “church tax” that is currently paid by more than half of all Germans, collected through the tax system, and distributed to Christian and Jewish organizations. It currently amounts to around 8-9% of a person’s salary. Continue reading
A deal between the Vatican and China, which would grant China the right to nominate future bishops, would likely end the diplomatic relationship between the Holy See and Taiwan that began in 1942.
Reports of the pending agreement come amid other reports of the suppression of religious expression throughout China.
A Human Rights Watch report estimates that over a million Muslim Uighurs are currently detained in re-education camps in the western province of Xinjiang. AP reported last week that reported that China’s government is seeking to drive citizens away from organized religion and toward the atheist Communist Party through scare tactics such as Bible-burning, shuttering churches, destroying crosses and forcing individuals to renounce their faith on paper. Continue reading
Last weekend, around 10,000 people gathered in a field near the town of Bleiburg in southern Austria for what the Documentation Centre of Austrian Resistance calls the “largest regular neo-Nazi rally” in Europe. Hitler salutes, racist flags and slogans were common. Kids ran around with fascist slogans on their T-shirts. Featured guests gave speeches defending fascism.
Efraim Zuroff, the Eastern Europe director for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, called the event “an affront to the memory of Holocaust victims.”
But the most surprising part of this event may be the identity of its organizer: the Croatian Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church.
What is the Catholic Church doing organizing a neo-Nazi rally? A look at history points to the answer. Continue reading
An excerpt from George Neumayr’s “The Political Pope,” to be released Tuesday.
After Pope Francis early in his papacy decried capitalism as “trickle-down economics” — a polemical phrase coined by the left during the Reagan years that Francis frequently borrows — radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh commented, “This is just pure Marxism coming out of the mouth of the Pope.” Talk show host Michael Savage called him “Lenin’s pope.” Pope Francis took such comments as a compliment. “I have met many Marxists in my life who are good people, so I don’t feel offended,” he told the Italian press. Continue reading
- “They are driving us out of the Middle East,” declared Pope Francis on returning from Turkey.
- “[I]t would be beautiful if all Islamic leaders, whether they are political, religious or academic leaders, would speak out clearly and condemn this because this would help the majority of Muslim people.” — Pope Francis, counseling Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
- While this welcoming stance is in keeping with the fundamental beliefs of the Catholic faith, the Pope as the “Good Shepherd” has an obligation to protect his flock from the militants among the refugees.
- Within the Catholic Church, there also exists a sub-dominant counter-melody that warns about Islamic hostility to the values of Judeo-Christian civilization.
- Cardinal Sarah targets what he refers to as “Islam’s pseudo-family values which legitimize polygamy, female subservience, sexual slavery, and child marriage.”
- At some point, the Catholic Church might raise the issue of persecution of Christian minorities in Muslim-majority countries at international fora such as the United Nations. The Church also could publicly ask Muslims of good will to express their solidarity with the persecuted and request international organizations to intervene to protect Christians.
- Given the centuries of hostility between Christendom and dar-al-Islam (the World of Islam), the Vatican’s caution may be understandable, but is ill-advised and no longer tenable.
Perhaps, in the light of the harm dhimmitude can do to both civic life and faith, the Catholic Church might re-assess its stance toward Islam from one of friendly engagement to cautionary disengagement. As radical jihadists continue to martyr Christians throughout the world, such a re-evaluation of Islam by the Vatican seems appropriate. Continue reading
- The fall of German Christianity leaves an emptiness that seems likely to be filled by a more multicultural and Islamic society. Germany today houses Europe’s largest Muslim community.
- Christians in Germany, Die Welt reports, will become a minority in 20 years.
- The falling birth rate will remove a piece of Germany larger than the former communist East Germany. It will result in a demographic loss equivalent to the population of Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne and Frankfurt combined.
- The German army just spent 428 million euros on various operations relating to migrants during the past year. It has been the costliest mission within German borders that the army of the Federal Republic of Germany has ever undertaken.
- In the decades after WWII, Germans have turned into hard-core pacifists, enjoying their role on the sidelines of global conflicts. The army was then turned into a humanitarian organization.
“Contemporary historians … right now, have failed to find a single historical example of a society that became secularised and maintained its birth rate over subsequent centuries,” the former UK chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, recently argued.
CHINESE authorities are clamping down on underground churches and threatening to “transform the thoughts” of Christians who do not comply.
The communist party strictly monitors religion with Christians expected to attend state-approved churches.
But unverified reports found on Chinese social media show a wave of underground churches have begun to thrive as Christians turn their back on the China Christian Council. Continue reading
At lunch the other day, a smart man asked me how come there hadn’t been terrorism in Italy, even though Islamic State keeps promising to attack the Vatican.
You’ve undoubtedly been asking yourself the same question, so I’m going to give you the answers. Answers, plural, because hardly anything happens for a simple reason, especially in a country as tricky and complicated as Italy. So there are several reasons. Continue reading
- In 2006, Pope Benedict XVI said what no Pope had ever dared to say — that there is a link between violence and Islam. Ten years later, Pope Francis never calls those responsible for anti-Christian violence by name and never mentions the word “Islam.”
- Pope Francis does not even try to re-evangeize or reconquer Europe. He seems deeply to believe that the future of Christianity is in the Philippines, in Brazil and in Africa. Probably for the same reason, the Pope is spending less time and effort in denouncing the terrible fate of Christians in the Middle East.
- “Multiculturalism” in Europe is the mosque standing on the ruins of the church. It is not the synthesis requested by Pope Francis. It is the road to becoming extinct.
- Asking Europe to be “multicultural” while it experiences a dramatic de-Christianization is extremely risky. In Germany, a new report found that “Germany has become demographically a multi-religious country.” In the UK, a major inquiry recently declared that “Britain is no longer a Christian country.” In France, Islam is also overtaking Christianity as the dominant religion.
To scroll the list of Pope Francis’s apostolic trips — Brazil, South Korea, Albania, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Ecuador, Cuba, United States, Mexico, Kenya, Uganda, Philippines — one could say that Europe is not exactly at the top of his agenda.
Any other doubts that Catholicism is now a cult? As in Islam, another cult, it has been infiltrated, redirected and weaponized.
In an interview published Tuesday with France’s La Croix, Pope Francis argued that Jesus’ call to spread the Gospel differs little from the jihad waged by radical Islamic terrorists.
The pope explained how ISIS’ “war of conquest” has bred a non-justified fear of Islam among Western countries. Continue reading
Pope Francis is adamantly opposed to free-market capitalism, and he denies being a Marxist. What does this make him? You need to know the answer!
Pope Francis has once again shaken things up on the world scene. He has written a new apostolic exhortation, “The Joy of the Gospel,” which declares an official enemy for the Catholic Church: free-market capitalism.
“Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world,” Francis wrote in his exhortation. “This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naive trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system.” Continue reading
The International Charlemagne Prize of Aachen will go to Pope Francis, the prize committee announced December 23. The prize is awarded for “exceptional work performed in the service of European unity,” the Charlemagne Prize website says.
While so many of the European Union’s founders saw their work through a Catholic lens, many today do not. Yet at this crucial juncture, as Europe struggles for unity, the one who has been singled out as offering hope for the future is the pope.
The pope is shown requesting collaboration with “those who think differently”, but meet God in “different ways”.
The video, complete with patriotic sounding music, shows Christians, Muslims, Buddhists and Jews declaring “I believe in love” and then coming together as they proclaim their belief in God, or “confidence in Buddha” . Continue reading
Europe’s prestigious Charlemagne Prize for promoting unity goes to the pope—an important sign of what’s to come.
That news will come as no surprise to those familiar with theTrumpet.com. For years we have said that the Catholic Church must play a powerful role in European unity.
The European Common Market has “so far … been unable to bring about full political union,” wrote Herbert W. Armstrong in his book The United States and Britain in Prophecy. “This will be made possible by the ‘good offices’ of the Vatican, who alone can be the symbol of unity to which they can look.”
Few see the signs of the Vatican playing this role, so far. Many of Europe’s modern leaders are from Europe’s very secular, multicultural left. But now, as Europe is becoming increasingly desperate for unity—with the euro, the border-free Schengen zone, and even the European Union itself under threat—we’re seeing more signs that it will look to the Vatican.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani will visit Italy next month, his first trip to a European Union capital, and also meet Pope Francis, a diplomatic source said on Wednesday. Continue reading