The 5th in my series of Theological Questions to Which the Answer is No is asked by the Catholic Herald.
They point to the dreadful killings and persecutions there such as the one in Alexandra in Egypt which caused the death of so many.
But this is to totally miss that Christianity came to birth in the Middle East and that we would lose so much of our understanding of the bible if we gave in to the siren calls to leave. That no-one who has heard Canon Andrew White can imagine that Christians don’t belong in the Middle East. To give in would be to give in to ethnic cleansing.
A slight glimmer of hope was the call by the European Parliament to governments to address the problem of persecution in the Middle East of Christians.
Catherine Ashton, the EU’s foreign policy chief, told the European Parliament that any “discrimination or violence” because of religious beliefs violates EU values and should be “taken seriously and condemned with the same force”.
She added that the EU would not “turn a blind eye” to the plight of “long-established Christian communities in the Middle East,” and was “ready to enhance co-operation with governments to combat intolerance and protect human rights”.
I hope that this is raised as a serious issue at the next foreign ministers meeting on January 31st.