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"But, reverend father," said Candide, "there is horrible evil in this world."

"What signifies it," said the Dervish, "whether there be evil or good? When his highness sends a ship to Egypt, does he trouble his head whether the mice on board are at their ease or not?"

"What, then, must we do?" said Pangloss.

"Hold your tongue," answered the Dervish.

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27 March 2008

A Billion Cheers for Father Zakaria Botros

I am a great fan and supporter of ex-Muslims. In order for there to be ever greater numbers of ex-Muslims someone must reveal to Muslims the truth about Islam and Christianity that has been deliberately obscured by the ulema. Raymond Ibrahim writes about Father Zakaria Botros (alternate spelling, Boutros), who is doing what needs to be done.
Though he is little known in the West, Coptic priest Zakaria Botros — named Islam’s “Public Enemy #1” by the Arabic newspaper, al-Insan al-Jadid — has been making waves in the Islamic world. Along with fellow missionaries — mostly Muslim converts — he appears frequently on the Arabic channel al-Hayat (i.e., “Life TV”). There, he addresses controversial topics of theological significance — free from the censorship imposed by Islamic authorities or self-imposed through fear of the zealous mobs who fulminated against the infamous cartoons of Mohammed. Botros’s excurses on little-known but embarrassing aspects of Islamic law and tradition have become a thorn in the side of Islamic leaders throughout the Middle East.

Botros is an unusual figure onscreen: robed, with a huge cross around his neck, he sits with both the Koran and the Bible in easy reach. Egypt’s Copts — members of one of the oldest Christian communities in the Middle East — have in many respects come to personify the demeaning Islamic institution of “dhimmitude” (which demands submissiveness from non-Muslims, in accordance with Koran 9:29). But the fiery Botros does not submit, and minces no words. He has famously made of Islam “ten demands,” whose radical nature he uses to highlight Islam’s own radical demands on non-Muslims.


Boutros speaks to Muslims on satellite and Internet television stations in Arabic. The reader may recall a few months back an embarrassing breastfeeding appeared in the media.
Botros spent three years bringing to broad public attention a scandalous — and authentic — hadith stating that women should “breastfeed” strange men with whom they must spend any amount of time. A leading hadith scholar, Abd al-Muhdi, was confronted with this issue on the live talk show of popular Arabic host Hala Sirhan. Opting to be truthful, al-Muhdi confirmed that going through the motions of breastfeeding adult males is, according to sharia, a legitimate way of making married women “forbidden” to the men with whom they are forced into contact — the logic being that, by being “breastfed,” the men become like “sons” to the women and therefore can no longer have sexual designs on them.

For that alone I salute Father Botros. Can you think without laughing about the situation of a man being breastfed by a woman in order for him to become less sexually attracted to her? I cannot.

In related news, Magdi Allam, who converted from Islam to Catholicism this week on Easter Sunday, and was baptized on television by Pope Benedict XVI, writes about it in Italian on FreeCopts.com. English translation (by freecopts.com) follows.
To acquire the gift of the Christian faith during the commemoration of Christ’s resurrection by the hand of the Holy Father is, for a believer, an incomparable and inestimable privilege. At almost 56 […], it is a historical, exceptional and unforgettable event, which marks a radical and definitive turn with respect to the past. The miracle of Christ’s resurrection reverberated through my soul, liberating it from the darkness in which the preaching of hatred and intolerance in the face of the “different,” uncritically condemned as “enemy,” were privileged over love and respect of “neighbor,” who is always, an in every case, “person”; thus, as my mind was freed from the obscurantism of an ideology that legitimates lies and deception, violent death that leads to murder and suicide, the blind submission to tyranny, I was able to adhere to the authentic religion of truth, of life and of freedom.

On my first Easter as a Christian I not only discovered Jesus, I discovered for the first time the face of the true and only God, who is the God of faith and reason.


Read the rest!

Nonie Darwish wrote about a threat against Father Botros' life back in February 2006. Some background in the comments here. CWN also profiles Father Botros. YOUvideos has disabled a video by Father Botros. Islameyat is mining the same vein as Father Botros. Father Zakaria Botros has a website here (Arabic)

So let us all cheer a billion times, once for just about every Muslim in the world who isn't already a secret Christian, for Father Zakaria Botros and all those who help him do the work he does.

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Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits.

                Matthew 7:15-16