Saturday, November 17, 2001

Washington Post excerpt

VATICAN CITY -- The plainclothes police on the lookout for pickpockets in St. Peter's Square also have an eye out for terrorists these days. Extra uniformed police keep watch on the crowds of pilgrims that flock daily to St. Peter's Basilica. Mail undergoes intense scrutiny, part of the reaction to an alert that followed the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the United States.

The city-state that is the headquarters for the Roman Catholic Church is nervously eyeing the distant conflict in Afghanistan, fearing that the church might become a target. In the longer term, Vatican officials are also concerned that accused terrorist leader Osama bin Laden's calls for holy war bear religious hostility that may awaken historical enmities between the church and the Muslim world.

At stake is one of the dearest projects of Pope John Paul II's 22-year reign as head of the church: the promotion of understanding between Muslims and Christians. During the pope's travels throughout the world, he has frequently taken time out to visit mosques and converse with Islamic clerics.

The Vatican fears that this
ecumenical campaign will fall victim to a conflict defined by some political analysts as an incipient "war of civilizations," in which some Muslims equate the church with the West and treat it as an enemy of Islam. "It is very worrying," said Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro Valls. "This has been a 20-year project of this pontiff. It is in danger of a major reversal."

It is the opinion of The Sabbatarian Network that the Catholic church has always exhibited its true goal to be the conquest and subjugation of Sabbatarians all over the world. Whether it be the taking of a small Jewish boy, the "Crusades" against Sabbath Keepers, the "Inquisition" against Sabbath Keepers, the support of Hitler against Jews (Sabbath Keepers) or her present goal of Ecumenism. The Catholic church hates Seventh Day Sabbath Keepers!

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