December 06, 2004

Who is My Neighbour?

I'm not much of a meta-blogger, but I have to urge you to read an article that appeared in the Washington Times Insider yesterday. We so often forget about the many conflicts in little known places.

The Beslan seige focused our attention for a brief time on North Ossetia, but I saw very little on the actual political, ethnic, and religious issues dividing North Ossetia with neighbouring Ingushetia. It is only now that I know something about the Ingush.

The article only briefly mentions an issue that needs to be on the minds and hearts of praying Christians. "The same region has emerged as a target of opportunity for radical Islamists needing a new base with the loss of Afghanistan. The goal: to marry the local ethnic grievances of Chechens, Ingush and others to the global goals of radical Islamist fundamentalism."

Combined with the example of Orthodox Christians in Serbia in their relationship to evangelical ethnic Hungarians, there seems to be an endemic ignorance of story of the Good Samaritan. Maybe everyone forgets to go to Liturgy on the 25th Sunday after Pentecost, or maybe the priests decide not to preach on the Gospel of the day.

In most of the places Islam meets Christianity, Orthodoxy is on the front line. At these places, the centuries of conflict have hardened the hearts on both sides. It is only through the work of the Holy Spirit that the love of God will ever shine through. If there is to be peace, there must be theosis. Otherwise, I fear militant Islam will gain the upper hand. It is a matter of love or death.

Posted by david at December 6, 2004 09:17 PM | TrackBack