Christendom’s Greatest Cathedral to Become a Mosque

Turkey is reclaiming its jihadi past, while Europe is simultaneously erasing its own Christian heritage.

PJ Media:

While unrest in Turkey continues to capture attention, more subtle and more telling events concerning the Islamification of Turkey — and not just at the hands of Prime Minister Erdogan but majorities of Turks — are quietly transpiring. These include the fact that Turkey’s Hagia Sophia museum is on its way to becoming a mosque. Why does the fate of an old building matter?

Because Hagia Sophia — Greek for “Holy Wisdom” — was for some thousand years Christianity’s greatest cathedral. Built in 537 A.D. in Constantinople, the heart of the Christian empire, it was also a stalwart symbol of defiance against an ever encroaching Islam from the east.

After parrying centuries of jihadi thrusts, Constantinople was finally sacked by Ottoman Turks in 1453. Its crosses desecrated and icons defaced, Hagia Sophia — as well as thousands of other churches — was immediately converted into a mosque, the tall minarets of Islam surrounding it in triumph.

Then, after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, as part of several reforms, secularist Ataturk transformed Hagia Sophia into a “neutral” museum in 1934 — a gesture of goodwill to a then-triumphant West from a then-crestfallen Turkey.

Thus the fate of this ancient building is full of portents. And according to Hurriyet Daily News, “A parliamentary commission is considering an application by citizens to turn the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul into a mosque…. A survey conducted with 401 people was attached to the application, in which more than 97 percent of interviewees requested the transformation of the ancient building into a mosque and afterwards for it to be reopened for Muslim worship.”

Even lesser known is the fact that other historic churches are currently being transformed into mosques, such as a 13thcentury church building — portentously also named Hagia Sophia — in Trabzon. After the Islamic conquest, it was turned into a mosque. But because of its “great historical and cultural significance” for Christians, it too, during Turkey’s secular age, was turned into a museum and its frescoes restored. Yet local authorities recently decreed that its Christian frescoes would again be covered and the church/museum turned into a mosque.

Similarly, the 5th century Studios Monastery, dedicated to St. John the Baptist, is set to become an active mosque. And the existence of the oldest functioning Christian monastery in the world, 5th century Mor Gabriel Monastery, is at risk. Inhabited today by only a few dozen Christians dedicated to learning the monastery’s teachings, the ancient Aramaic language spoken by Jesus, and the Orthodox Syriac tradition, neighboring Muslims filed a lawsuit accusing the monks of practicing “anti-Turkish activities” and of illegally occupying land which belongs to Muslim villagers. The highest appeals court in Ankara ruled in favor of the Muslim villagers, saying the land that had been part of the monastery for 1,600 years is not its property, absurdly claiming that the monastery was built over the ruins of a mosque — even though Muhammad was born 170 years after the monastery was built.

Turkey’s Christian minority, including the Orthodox Patriarch, are naturally protesting this renewed Islamic onslaught against what remains of their cultural heritage — to deaf ears…

And from the conclusion:

Indeed, at a time when Turkey is openly reclaiming its jihadi heritage, Europeans are actively erasing their Christian heritage which for centuries kept the Islamic jihad at bay. Among other capitulations, Europeans are currently betraying church buildings to Muslims to convert to mosques and scrubbing references of the historic Turkish jihads against Europe from classroom textbooks, lest Muslim students be offended.

Meanwhile, here are neighboring Turkey’s Muslims openly praising the same jihadi warlords who brutally conquered a portion of Europe centuries ago, converting thousands of churches into mosques, even as they openly prepare to finish the job — which may not even require force, as Europe actively sells its own soul.

 

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About Fr Stephen Smuts

TAC Priest in South Africa.
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3 Responses to Christendom’s Greatest Cathedral to Become a Mosque

  1. Robert Ian Williams says:

    Surely it is better to be used as a house of worship ( however imperfectly) than just a museum.There are 17 million Muslims in greater istanbul and barely 2,000 Greeks.

  2. Mourad says:

    Our kind host did not point out that this story originates from a person at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, a neo-conservative foundation funded by the likes of the Olin Foundation, the Bradley Foundation and the Sarah Scaife Foundation and one of its purposes is the funding of “Jihad Watch”. These are people somewhat to the right of Ivan the Terrible – the sort who supported the Kirkpatrick Doctrine in relation to Juntas in Latin America (what do a few thousand disparecidos matter), the Reagan proxy war with the Soviet Union, which gave Al Qaeda its legs, the Invasion of Iraq etc, etc. So one can hardly expect objectivity from anyone they fund. The Article needed a health warning.

    Ataturk is revered by the Turks as the founder of modern Turkey. He dragged that country by the short and curlies into the 20th Century – but he conceived his new state as being aggressively secular – seeking to relegate all religion into the private sphere. The same flawed model which came from the so-called “European Enlightenment” and which found its way into US political philosophy.

    As the excellent Deborah puts it on Foolishness to the World :-

    “However, my view is that the Enlightenment did not spring from nothing, but was an attempt have all the benefits or goods that came out of a Judeo-Christian foundation without the religion that made it possible. It set the individual and autonomy as the highest good without any sense of what freedom is for, or a regard for the importance of having intervening institutions such as the family, religions, civic organizations, labor unions, charities to protect the individual from totalitarian impulses of the state.”

    Turkey could not be a proper democracy under Ataturk or any of his successors precisely because those intervening institutions were systematically repressed. And so far as religion was concerned – all faiths suffered including that of the majority as well as those of minorities. Ethnic minorities were also systematically oppressed – ask any Kurd who has the misfortune to live in Turkey.

    The present government is more open to giving all faiths a measure of greater influence in public life. 99% of the population is Muslim (80% Sunni, 23% Shia and only 0.9% Christians of any persuasion). It will undoubtedly make some mistakes en route what government does not?

    It is surely better that Turkey backs away from the myth that the aggressively secular state is the best form of government. Yes, the rights of minorities must be protected too – and the present government has made great progress in that regard in the last few years as witness its increasing compliance with the European Convention on Human Rights.

    The biggest risk is that the secularists in the Army and the Civil Service overthrow the present government and return Turkey to the kind of right wing secular military Junta which US Neoconservatives invariably support as their preferred form of government.

  3. Pingback: Christendom’s Greatest Cathedral to Become a Mosque | ~~Defender of Faith~Guardian of Truth~~

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