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Author Topic: 3-way interfaith cooperation in Jerusalem  (Read 2878 times) Average Rating: 0
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MBZ
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« on: March 31, 2005, 03:20:10 PM »

Hi all!

This was on the front page of today's New York Times (see the attached photo too):

Quote
March 31, 2005

Clerics Fighting a Gay Festival for Jerusalem

By LAURIE GOODSTEIN and GREG MYRE
 
nternational gay leaders are planning a 10-day WorldPride festival and parade in Jerusalem in August, saying they want to make a statement about tolerance and diversity in the Holy City, home to three great religious traditions.

Now major leaders of the three faiths - Christianity, Judaism and Islam - are making a rare show of unity to try to stop the festival. They say the event would desecrate the city and convey the erroneous impression that homosexuality is acceptable.

"They are creating a deep and terrible sorrow that is unbearable," Shlomo Amar, Israel's Sephardic chief rabbi, said yesterday at a news conference in Jerusalem attended by Israel's two chief rabbis, the patriarchs of the Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Armenian churches, and three senior Muslim prayer leaders. "It hurts all of the religions. We are all against it."

Abdel Aziz Bukhari, a Sufi sheik, added: "We can't permit anybody to come and make the Holy City dirty. This is very ugly and very nasty to have these people come to Jerusalem."

Israeli authorities have not indicated what action, if any, they might take to limit the events. Banning the festival would seem unlikely, though the government could withhold the required permits for specific events, like a parade.

Interfaith agreement is unusual in Israel. The leaders' joint opposition was initially generated by the Rev. Leo Giovinetti, an evangelical pastor from San Diego who is both a veteran of the American culture war over homosexuality and a frequent visitor to Israel, where he has formed relationships with rabbis and politicians.

Organizers of the gay pride event, Jerusalem WorldPride 2005, said that 75 non-Orthodox rabbis had signed a statement of support for the event, and that Christian and Muslim leaders as well as Israeli politicians were expected to announce their support soon. They said they were dismayed to see that what united their opponents was their objection to homosexuality.

"That is something new I've never witnessed before, such an attempt to globalize bigotry," said Hagai El-Ad, the executive director of Jerusalem Open House, a gay and lesbian group that is the host for the festival. "It's quite sad and ironic that these religious figures are coming together around such a negative message."

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, co-chairwoman of the festival and the rabbi of Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, a gay synagogue in New York City, said the controversy was another sign that each religion had become polarized between its liberal and conservative wings.

The global Anglican Communion split deeply over homosexuality in the last two years after its American affiliate ordained an openly gay bishop and the Canada affiliate decided to allow blessings of same-sex unions.

"I reject that they have the right to define religion in such a narrow way," Rabbi Kleinbaum said of religious leaders who denounce homosexuality. "Gay and lesbian people are saying we are equal partners in religious communities, and we believe in a religious world in which all are created in God's image."

The festival is planned for Aug. 18-28 and is expected to draw thousands of visitors from dozens of countries. The theme is "Love Without Borders," and a centerpiece will be a parade on Aug. 25 through Jerusalem, a city that remains deeply conservative, though other parts of Israel have become increasingly accepting of gays in recent years. Other events include a film festival, art exhibits and a conference for clerics.

When the first WorldPride festival was held five years ago in Rome, religious opposition came from the Vatican, while secular opposition came from a neo-Fascist group that vowed to hold a counterdemonstration. But the neo-Fascists canceled their demonstration, the march came off peacefully, and even a few center-right politicians joined many thousands of marchers.

One day later, however, Pope John Paul II appeared on a balcony over St. Peter's Square and delivered a message expressing his "bitterness" that the gay festival had gone forward, calling it an "offense to the Christian values of a city that is so dear to the hearts of Catholics across the world."

Both WorldPride festivals were initiated by an umbrella group, InterPride, that says its mission is to promote gay rights internationally.

The outcry over the 2005 festival will not be confined to Israel. The American evangelical leader who helped to galvanize the opposition, Mr. Giovinetti, is the senior pastor of Mission Valley Christian Fellowship, an independent church that meets in a hotel in Southern California. A former band leader in Las Vegas, he is also host of a radio program heard on stations around the United States.

Neither he nor other evangelical American leaders were at the news conference in Jerusalem, which was called by the chief rabbinate of Israel. But by all accounts Mr. Giovinetti played a crucial role in spreading the first alarms among religious leaders about the gay festival.

He said he had first heard about WorldPride from a congregation member who had told Mr. Giovinetti that he was gay for many years and still monitored gay Web sites. Mr. Giovinetti said he alerted Israeli politicians and religious leaders.

Mr. Giovinetti circulated a petition against the festival, titled "Homosexuals to Desecrate Jerusalem," which he said had been signed by every member of the ultra-Orthodox Shas Party in the Israeli Parliament. Another American who helped bring together the opposition was Rabbi Yehuda Levin, of the Rabbinical Alliance of America, which says it represents more than 1,000 American Orthodox rabbis. At the news conference in Jerusalem, he called the festival "the spiritual rape of the Holy City." He said, "This is not the homo land, this is the Holy Land."

Annual marches by homosexuals have become routine in Tel Aviv, a secular coastal city. For the past three years, gay parades have also been staged in Jerusalem. Religious groups have complained, but the police have issued permits for the events, which have been held without any serious incidents.

Laurie Goodstein reported from New York for this article and Greg Myre from Jerusalem.

Link: http://www.iht.com/bin/print_ipub.php?file=/articles/2005/03/31/news/gays.html

The gentlemen in the photo are: From left: Sheik Abed es- Salem Menasra, deputy mufti of Jerusalem; the Rev. Michel Sabbagh, the Latin patriarch; the Rev. Aris Shirvanian, the Armenian patriarch; Rabbi Shlomo Amar, the Sephardic chief rabbi; and Rabbi Yona Metzger, the Ashkenazi chief rabbi. The man at right was not identified.

Be well!

MBZ
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Hadel
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« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2005, 05:24:55 AM »

Thanks, MBZ, I am glad to see some unity in this world. I wish all would realize that the three faiths are actually "cousins" and these "cousins" should stop fighting since we pray to the same God. Now, I hope and pray in the future we may agree on other issues as well.

I believe, it is easy to divide with a sword, however, impossible to unite with a sword.

God Bless,
Hadel

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« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2005, 06:33:59 AM »

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I wish all would realize that the three faiths are actually "cousins" and these "cousins" should stop fighting since we pray to the same God.

Please do not equate the Islamic Allah with the Christian God.

Though from the Christian perspective, an equation of the Judaic God with the Christian God is nonetheless imperfect- considering we disagree concerning His nature, His interaction with mankind throughout history Anno Domini, and the interpretation of His interaction with mankind throughout history Before Christ - He is nonetheless, again from the Christian perspective, the God of the true divinely inspired word of God as held by the Jews - The Old Testament, written by true prophets - divinely appointed, divinely inspired, wise and upright men before God. He is no more or less the God of the New Testament who was exegeted through His only begotten Son the Lord Jesus Christ; the Father and friend of mankind; the compassionate, the mericiful, the loving.

Is this the God you want to equate with one who condones/promotes/commands substantially everything our God abhors; the "best of deceivers" (Surah 3:54) who outright lies, and fabricates imposters to replace historical figures who are integral to our faith?

Peace.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2005, 06:35:26 AM by EkhristosAnesti » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2005, 12:24:05 AM »

EkhristosAnesti IS A LIAR!!!!!

I cant take ur LYING ANYMORE. Ive been watching you closely EA, ive been reading ur lies for a while now, but now its time to EXPOSE YOU, you lying kaffir.

NO-ONE LISTEN TO EKERISTOSANSTI, he knows NOTHING ABOUT ISLAM. HE NEVR BACKS UP ANYTHING HE HAS TO SAY THE LIAR.

If i want to know about Christianity do i go to a non-Christian? NO, I will go to one of your child molesting priests. so u ppl should find out about Islam from MUSLIMS not KAFFIRS. Or maybe EkstosAnsti I will go to ur holy monk of barsoom, shall i tell everyone what your holy monk did in the holy monastery or ARE YOU ASHAMED.?!!!

May Allah (SWT) CURSE YOU, AMEN.

BTW, Ive been reading all ur garbage, and thotit was quite funny that not everyone here is even on ur side hahahahhaha This EO sect thinks ur a HERETIC it seems hahaha i love the divisions in ur false religion.

I will expose you EA


 For calling our priests child molesters, you are now banned. You could have had an intelligent response, but instead, you just showed the type of mentality that your false religion produces.

St Ahmed the Calligrapher, intercede for this infidel!

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« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2005, 01:36:13 AM »

Although EA is totally capable of replying and exposing the Ahmed Deedan, one has to wonder about what will Ahmed Deedan expose, to whom, and how he will do so ?
What are the basis for discussions with a muslim ?
- The Quran :
But together with the verses, we need the authentic interpretations and we need to follow a fundemtalist approach to figure out how Islam was understood in the time of Muhamed and by the Sahabah, the closest to Muhamed and who actually collected the Quran after the death of Muhamed, some 20 years after his death, which is a very interesting story.
Anything outside the earliest interpretations of Qurtubi, Ibn Katheer, Tabari, Seuoti, Galalein,Ibn Temiah are just attempts to "christinise" Islam, if this is at all possible.

2- The Haddith
These are the quotes of the prophets, and are the second source of jurisdiction in Islam. The universally acknowledged books by Sunnah muslims that contain these quotes are Sahih Tabari, Sahih Muslim, Musnad AHmad, Ibn Magaah, Nessai, Mautu' Malek, Sunnan EL-Termusi. This is how the Islam was practiced and understood for the last 14 centuries.

3- Sunnah
...which is the life of Muhamed that muslims imitate and take as an example for them to follow, and is together with the Haddith the second source of jurisdiction and the living example on how Islam is to be practiced. The acknowledged books in this area are "Tabaqaat EL-Kubrah" for Ibn Saad, Sirah for Ibn Hisham, Sirah for Ibn Isaac, which are the oldest books relating the "blessed" life of the prophet.

This is a simple introduction for those who do not know Islam to be able to follow the discussion, in case one takes place. We can also demonstrate how muslims have followed these sources throughout the ages, and why it is dangerous to human kind to follow such religion. Referring to new books that try to make it look cleaner is simply ridiculus from an honest research point of view.

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Hadel: I wish all would realize that the three faiths are actually "cousins" and these "cousins" should stop fighting since we pray to the same God.
No, we do not worship the same God, and I totally agree with EA on this issue. There is a certain disadvantage for Americans and Europeans and everybody who does not know arabic, and that is to take whatever is presented to him without having actual access to the real sources of Islam. Instead of getting acquainted with the horrible Allah and the bloody history of Islam, its satanic teachings and the actual society in which it grew in, they have to settle with the new image presented by saudi money. Islam in english is different than that in arabic, Islam in power is different than Islam as a minority.

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HE NEVR BACKS UP ANYTHING HE HAS TO SAY THE LIAR.
Actually he does, and he backs everything he says with the authentic books of Islam, the ones that you do not know or did not have time to consult , which is a disaster. If you are familiar with these books, then the disaster is bigger.
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Ive been watching you closely EA
Is this a threat Huh? I want to ask the forum adminstrators to stop make sure such threats is not used to intimidate EA or actually harass him.
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NO, I will go to one of your child molesting priests. so u ppl should find out about Islam from MUSLIMS not KAFFIRS
As you bring it up, the child molesting priests, one has to say to their credit they did not assume prophethood nor proclaim themselves "Ashraf el-murasleen" (the most honorable of prophets and messangers). On the contrary, Muhamed was a child molestor who molested Aisha at 6 years of age and raped Safiyah, named himself a prophet.
We wish we had answers from muslims, but either out of ignorance with their own religion or out of dishonesty and blind zeal for Islam, they do not make sense.
Quote
Or maybe EkstosAnsti I will go to ur holy monk of barsoom, shall i tell everyone what your holy monk did in the holy monastery or ARE YOU ASHAMED.?!!!
I wish you relate everything you have, for the forum is not full of illetrate people who will accept this story, but people who are gifted with common sense. It is good to try to develop one for you as well. You might also show your incredible sources, and they will judge for themselves.This is not Ahmed Deedat's site or Jehad or anti-kafeers or islam's sword websites.
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May Allah (SWT) CURSE YOU, AMEN..........you lying kaffir.........
I must remind you to complete the "dua' " on this holy kafeer withcursing the jewish nation:"Kill the Jews whenever you find them...the grandchildren of monkeys and pigs .... allahuma make their women widows and their children orphans....allahuma amen. "
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This EO sect thinks ur a HERETIC it seems hahaha i love the divisions in ur false religion.
- Did you ever hear about Sunnah muslim with their four different denominations, Shia muslim with about 12 denominations, Kadianiah (among them your champion Deedat), Ismaliyiah, Druz, Quranists, Mu'tazalah, Sufis...and the list goes on ?
- You might learn something about disagreeing without killing each other.

Salam.

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« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2005, 01:38:05 AM »

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St Ahmed the Calligrapher, intercede for this infidel!
Who is this saint ? Can anybody relate his story to us ?
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« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2005, 05:22:04 AM »

I write this response under the assumption that Anastasios will accept my P.M request to "un-ban" Mr Deedat, such that he may have one more chance to respect himself, and also the chance to defend his charges and accusations against me, and to respond to my challenges.

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I cant take ur LYING ANYMORE.

Cry me a river.

After you've done that, quote the statement I made which you purport was deceptively made, and then provide us the substance to this charge,

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Ive been watching you closely EA, ive been reading ur lies for a while now,

Looks like I have a fan, I’m flattered. Maybe you would like to clarify what you really meant by “I’ve been watching you closely” - was that a threat? I know you Muslims aren’t afraid to admit to such things, so I wont doubt an honest reply.

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NO-ONE LISTEN TO EKERISTOSANSTI, he knows NOTHING ABOUT ISLAM.

I wander how many people took that one seriously...I'm an imam kid, I know your Islam like Muhammed knows terrorism.

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If i want to know about Christianity do i go to a non-Christian?

That’s usually the case with you Muslims, unfortunately. Ahmed Deedat, Jamal Badawi, Shabir Ally, are your authorities on Christianity - forget about St Athanasius, St Cyril, St Basil, St John Chrysostom etc etc.

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I will go to one of your child molesting priests.

A Muhammedian has the guts to say child molester on this forum? You know; you might as well have given me a big wooden plank and requested: “EA please spank me. Spank me good!”

Would you like to discuss what your prophet did with a 9 year old who was still playing with dolls?
Or better yet would you like to discuss what your prophet did with her when she was 6 before the consummation?
Or better yet, would you like to discuss his fantasies of a 4 year old girl?
Would you like to discuss contemporary precedent and religious decrees condoning sexual acts with pre-pubescent minors?
Maybe you would even like to discuss the implicit Quranic sanction (recognized by scholars of the likes of Imam Qurtubi), of sexual intercourse with pre-pubescent little kiddies?

You don’t know who you’re messing with kid.

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u ppl should find out about Islam from MUSLIMS not KAFFIRS.

This kaffir is not expressing his own opinions here buddy - Im using your own sources. Deal with it.

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Or maybe EkstosAnsti I will go to ur holy monk of barsoom

That’s the one-liner of all Egyptian Islamics - that’s all you have against us Copts, that one filthy dirty lie - you Muslims are desparate.

Tell me something, If I want to find out about REAL illicit sexual relations being condoned and practised by religious authorities and “holy men” - do I go to the "houses of refuge" in Iran, you know..those mosques housing 300 000 prostitutes, or do I just go to the Quran and hadiths, and acquiant myself with Muhammed's satanic principle of Mu'tah?

Or in your own words: ARE YOU ASHAMED.?!!!

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This EO sect thinks ur a HERETIC it seems hahaha i love the divisions in ur false religion.

I will deal with those extremists of both EO and OO when I get the chance to - but this is not your problem - there’s a huge pile of turd in your own backyard that was never put their by semantic/philosophical barriers or political bias, and which stinks worse than your Prophet’s donkey ya’foor. Your double standard accusation is only typical desperate Islamic polemics. Furthermore it was your Muhammed that set a prophetic limit with regards to the amount of times Islam would be divided, a limit which has been well superseded - maybe you would like to explain that one for us.

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I will expose you EA.

You’re a kid, you have exposed yourself.

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May Allah (SWT) CURSE YOU


MWA, love you too Kiss

Peace.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2005, 05:30:50 AM by EkhristosAnesti » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2005, 12:19:02 AM »

Mr. Deedat has been unbanned at the express request of EkChristosAnesti.  If he repeats his ad hominem attacks on Orthodoxy, he will be rebanned.
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« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2005, 12:21:07 AM »

Here is a brief description of the life of St Ahmed in French:
http://nominis.cef.fr/contenus/saints_6745.html

Here is a basic google translation:

Martyr. He had been high in the Islamic religion by his parents. Itself became scribe with the chancellery of the sultan, and it had a significant situation in Constantinople. Not being married, it had taken for concubine one of the Christian slaves, originating in Russia. It is it which, little by little, made him discover the liturgy of the Church. For that, it got dressed as a Christian in order to be able to enter the church. One of the calligraphers of the sultan who briguait his place, denounced it. Ahmed was stopped and locked up with the ordinary prisoners, completely deprived of food. At the end one week, it appeared again and was decapitated. It accepted the baptism of blood thus, because it had not received yet the baptism of water and the Spirit.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2005, 12:21:57 AM by Anastasios » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2005, 02:31:07 AM »

Thanks Anastasios for relating the story of St.Ahmed the martyr.
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« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2005, 09:43:27 PM »

Deedat, I'm waiting for you to expose me. Defend yourself, yalla.
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« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2005, 12:09:47 AM »

hahaha U ppl ban me already, what r u afraid of? Afraid I will prove the deception of ur religion and expose the lies of this pig E-Krusty-A-NAZI? I know the truth hurts but i was only stating a fact or dont u ppl watch the news? vry time i open the news there is a story about some priest molesting a child - WATCH THE NEWS - am i not allowed to simply relay what I watch on the NEWS? If u ban me again, this is clear proof that u are afraid of Islam - afraid bcoz we are taking over and exposing the lies u say about Isa (peace be upon him) making a man into a god. read ur bible and show me where Isa (pbuh) ever said that he is a god.

E-krusty-A-nazi- again u keep deceiving the ppl u shaytan. Muhammed (pbuh) never comitted the actions u attribute to him. There wasnt any reference in ur post and therefore proving my point that u lie because u have no srouces to back up ur claims. Muhammed (pbuh) married Aisha when she was 9 and this was the cultural norm u ignorant - y do u judge him by western standards.even in some states in America they allow sex for 11 year olds. He also had no sexual contact with her before 9 and Islam does NOT allow pre-pubescent sexual contact as u claim. Back up ur claims u liar, and i dont want ur fake hadiths, give me Al-Quran Al-Kareem.

BTW - I wasnt threatening u. If i wanted to threaten u i would say it to ur face, because i know who u r. Pretty stupid thing to put ur photo in ur profile when u know how many ppl hate u because of ur lies Wink I dare u cowards to ban me again, i know u cant face the truth and i know i threaten the stability of ur website by introdocing the truth.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2005, 12:10:38 AM by ahmed-deedat » Logged
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« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2005, 01:08:24 AM »

Putting your insults and hysterical claims aside, you made only one good point.
Quote
Pretty stupid thing to put ur photo in ur profile when u know how many ppl hate u because of ur lies I dare u cowards to ban me again, i know u cant face the truth and i know i threaten the stability of ur website by introdocing the truth.
Let us say it was not wise from EA to put his photo, for islamic terrorist like Deedan and others can go a distance in hurting those who know about the REAL islam.

As for the story of Muhamed's molestation of Aisha, please go back to Sirah Ibn Hisham, and Sirah Ibn Isaac, and Tabaqat El-Kubrah of Ibn Saad, and you will find the story of the marriage in details. On a hot day, while Aisha was playing with her dolls, her mother Um Ruman took her from the house, washed her face, and gave her up to Muhamed. She was six at the time. Between six and nine he was "yufa7'edhah" , which is a sexual act of molestation.
The excuse that this is normal in Saudi Arabia at the time is trivial, for a religion is supposed to raise the standard and not just go with the general public. It shows the reality of Islam even more evident, as a political movement that needs supporters and appeases them. There is actually a whole book in two volumes about the reason for inspiration of quranic verses by a graduate from Azhar, the islamic vatican, called Khalil Abd El-Kareem. The book is banned from all arabic countries. It proves that Muhamed in every verses on the Quran actually followed the demands of his followers.  

As for child molesting priests, we can trade stories here about the same for muslim sheikhs and clergy. We condemn such actions, for they have no basis in christianity. Unfortunately for you, you cannot do the same. Metwali El-Sharawi, the top sheikh in Egypt in the 70's, 80's and 90's, was a child molestor, according to all human standards, but not according to islam. So are the clergy of Saudi Arabia of the Medina and Mekkah, for molesting boys and girls is accepted in Islam. We can go beyond that and state the fact that a man can marry his daughter from adultry in islam, if she is not legally (by court papers) his daughter.

You just discuss actions of sinners, we are discussing the very core of Islam from the very islamic book, your own references that teach you how to pray, to fast, and all the sunnah. If you cannot compete on this level of discussion, why provoke your debaters ?

We are restrained to reveal the whole truth about Islam for all the stories and teachings are just horrible and will pollute the forums with unhuman actions and doctrines of Muhamed and his followers.

« Last Edit: April 11, 2005, 06:37:42 AM by Stavro » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2005, 05:48:25 AM »

Out of respect for MBZ, I will continue my discussion with Deedat in a new thread. I realize and respect the purpose of MBZ’s thread, which is to show how the three “Abrahamaic” faiths can get along and unite for common purposes such as standing against evils like homosexuality. My initial response in this thread which was opposed to a comment made by Hadel, was only intended to argue that there is a certain limit to which we can express and enjoy such times of unity. Making statements like “we all have the same God” which has certain inappropriate theological overtones - especially considering the context in which Muslims often make this expression to imply that the God of the Holy Bible is the god of the quran - is not what I would call appropriate. I will submit that maybe Hadel subjectively intended something a little more liberal than how I interpreted that statement - however I thought it necessary to be qualified.

MBZ, I’m sorry that your thread has been hijacked by this cyber terrorist Deedat.

Deedat I have answered you over here:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/newboard/index.php/topic,5834.0.html

Stavro, I’d love you to continue with your input as well.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2005, 05:55:16 AM by EkhristosAnesti » Logged

No longer an active member of this forum. Sincerest apologies to anyone who has taken offence to anything posted in youthful ignorance or negligence prior to my leaving this forum - October, 2012.

"Philosophy is the imitation by a man of what is better, according to what is possible" - St Severus
MBZ
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« Reply #14 on: May 15, 2005, 06:17:57 AM »

Hi all!

Well, thankee EkhristosAnesti!

Getting back to the topic at hand, I saw the following in today's Jerusalem Post:

Quote
J'LEM CENTER DELAYS GAY PRIDE PARADE

By Etgar Lefkovits and JPOST staff

The international gay pride parade planned to take place in Jerusalem this summer has been postponed to 2006, due to the upcoming implementation of the disengagement plan.

A committee meeting of the Jerusalem Gay and Lesbian Center arrived at the decision in coordination with Interpride, the international association overseeing the parade, Israel Radio reported.

"The gay community in Israel is not oblivious to what is going on in the country and to the major public event that the Gaza pullout will be," Hagai El-Ad, the director of Jerusalem's Gay and Lesbian Center, said earlier this month.

The decision by local organizers to postpone the 10-day event due to the Gaza withdrawal represents a dramatic about-face for the group, which had previously refused to even discuss the possibility of a postponement amidst rising public opposition to the parade over the last couple months.

The move was seen as a face-saving measure in light of police opposition to issuing a permit for a major event that coincided with the planned pullout from Gaza.

Police were planning to ask organizers to postpone the event since their forces will be overburdened with the concomitant withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, officials said, although El-Ad noted that such a request had not been received to date.

The 10-day international gay event was scheduled to take place on August 18, just three days after the planned new date for the month-long Gaza withdrawal.

Even before the conflict with the Gaza pullout emerged, the idea of holding such an international parade in Jerusalem was a source of bitter controversy.

In a largely conservative city, with a strong religious and traditional makeup, the idea of holding such an international parade in Jerusalem is seen by many, even outside of religious circles, as out of touch with both the spiritual character of the city as well as the sensitivities of its observant residents.

The planned international gay parade in Jerusalem spurred a rare show of unity among senior Jewish Christian and Muslim religious leaders in the Holy Land who had joined forces in urging the government to cancel the event, which they viewed as a deliberate affront and provocation to millions of believers around the world.

At the same time, the parade won the support of the three major non-orthodox streams of Judaism, including the head of Israel's Masorti (Conservative) movement, Rabbi Ehud Bandel.

The movement's public backing of the parade was questioned by some other Rabbis from the traditionalist movement as out of touch with basic core values and the Bible.

Jerusalem held its first annual local gay parade only three years ago.

The last international gay parade, which took place in Rome in 2000 despite the wrath of the Vatican, attracted about half a million participants, while local organizers had been expecting tens of thousands of revelers for the Jerusalem event this summer.

Link: http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull&cid=1116123539510

Be well!

MBZ
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