A Church in Saudi Arabia?
I have been praying for a long time for Saudi Arabia and the Muslim world. I usually pray that the light of the glory of Christ would shine even there in the darkness and bring joy and healing. However – many times I feel that my prayers lack fervor and faith. I pray for Muslims and Islam, but do I really believe that a change is possible?
Do I really believe that a day will come when the glory of Christ will shine in freedom over these countries? Of course I believe; but my faith is weak.
Today I read an article (see below) that seems to bring a flicker of hope to the Muslim world, more specifically – to Saudi Arabia. There is news that the Catholics (at least) may be allowed to build a church in the future in Saudi Arabia.
Apparently last week – “a small Catholic chapel bearing neither bells nor visible crosses” was inaugurrated in Qatar, and there are discussions for the building of another one in Saudi Arabia.
And reportedly the Pope, who has been calling for “reciprocity” [demanding that the same religious freedom enjoyed by Muslims in the West should be granted to Christian minorities in the Islamic world] for a long time, has personally appealed to King Abdullah on this topic during his first ever visit to Vatican last November.
In a country in which even the celebration of a Christian holiday is forbidden, as well as the wearing of crucifixes and other religious symbols, this would be a step forward toward freedom and reciprocity. Much much more is necessary – of course – but it is a (small) step in the right direction.
For a religion (Islam) that brags about justice, freedom, and equality – a religion that was recently allowed to build a mosque (with Saudi money) right across from the Vatican, allowing a Christian church to be built is only a small step toward fairness and reciprocity. However – I do applaud this step and I am encouraged in my prayers.
This is good news for Christ and his followers as we commemorate the one who loved the world (which includes the Muslims) so much that He was ready to pay the ultimate sacrifice. There is power and love at the cross for people from all nations – Saudi Arabians included.
I believe Lord that you can do miracles and make your light and healing come abundantly over this land too. Help my unbelief!
See the full article from Times here: