Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Churches in Morocco speak out against mission to Muslims

Sarah Touahri and Naoufel Cherkaoui wrote an artcile for Magharebia about the expulsion of 5 missionaries form Morocco. Here some parts of that arcticle. For the whole article, click HERE.

According to the judicial police in Casablanca, the five expelled missionaries were arrested on Saturday (March 28th) during a proselytising meeting involving Moroccan nationals. Police officers also seized religious materials including books and videos in Arabic.

The expulsion of the five missionaries -- four from Spain and one from Germany --prompted a response on Monday from Rabat Archbishop Monsignor Vincent Landel and Jean Luc Blanc, pastor of the Evangelical Church of Morocco, denouncing any "proselytising" activity in Morocco.

They were keen to stress the key role played by the "official churches" in supporting Christians living in Morocco.

Landel denied having any links with the missionaries and spoke out against the way that some of the media were grouping them all together.

"Missionaries who come here to convert Muslims have no link with the Catholic Church or with the Protestant Church. It is not in our name that they have obtained their residency permits in Morocco."

The archbishop explained that the mission of the Church in Morocco is to help Christians live out their faith in the recognition that they are in a Muslim country. "We help them enter into an Muslim-Christian dialogue, to respect their Muslim brothers and to trust them," he said.

Such a dialogue rules out any kind of proselytising at the intellectual and theological level, the statement continues. Christians are involved in various activities alongside Muslims who share the same values and objectives, despite their differences.

1 comment:

Snake Oil Baron said...

The condemnation is probably real since such activity does increase the risk for native Christians. But from an evangelical point of view the condemnation means nothing.

Strange, though. I thought the general strategy of missionaries, especially in Islamic nations was to train and support local missionaries who better understand the culture and can navigate the risks more in a more sophisticated manner.