Thursday, June 23, 2005

They’ve got a point
This is circulating on some Eastern Orthodox blogs and shows that among the rank and file in much of the world, ‘conservative Christian’ (including specifically in the Catholic world) doesn’t equal ‘Bush supporter’:

In Greece in December of 2003, I ran into a large number of pious Orthodox Christians who held a position which startled me. In a way similar to that of many fundamentalists in this country who like to assign eschatological roles to modern day nations, depending on how the world is ending at that particular moment, I met more than a few Greeks who argued that the United States was the anti-Christ. I do not subscribe to that viewpoint -- generally I hold to the notion that God tends to be neutral toward nations, and discourage hubris in thinking about, for example, the US as God's chosen nation.* Still, these were devout Orthodox Christians, who were perfectly loving and welcoming to me personally, but sincerely held to this notion. The United States, they declared, was an international bully. It seeks only oil. It was not that they necessarily trusted Arabs themselves, but as one person put it, "We know how to deal with Arabs. We have been dealing with them for over a thousand years."
And among the Arabs are not only Christians but people who belong to the same tradition that they do, such as Samer.

*And of course this reasonable American fellow is correct, but the point remains that devout Christians in the Old World think as they do about all this.

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