The way of understanding with Islam
The coordinator of a Muslim initiative to promote common ground with Christians says that leaders of the two religions have a duty to protect adherents of the other faith against followers of their own.
"For both our religions harming religious minorities among us is evil, is absolutely forbidden and is ultimately a rejection of God's love and a crime against God himself," Prince Ghazi Bin Muhammad Bin Talal of Jordan said on the opening day of a 1-4 November 2010 meeting of Muslim and Christian leaders and scholars in Geneva.
Speaking at the Ecumenical Centre, which houses the World Council of Churches and other international organisations, Ghazi urged leaders of the two faiths to, "defend the other against followers of our own religion when the other is weak and oppressed, especially in a social minority context".
The remarks come in the wake of the appalling tragedy in Iraq, where anti-Christian extremists occupied a Catholic Church on Sunday, taking over 100 congregants hostage, and a failed military operation to storm the building and free them resulted in 50 deaths and many more injuries.
COMMENT: The Prince is right. True spirituality is shown through protecting those whose understanding is other than our own.The followers of different faiths need to listen sensitively to each other and to defend each other from those who would emphasise divisions in a way that builds up walls. The sad truth is we have a long way to go before that aspiration is met