Periodically there is a kerfuffle about Muslims worshipping the same God we do

Before 9/11/01, it wasn’t such a big deal. But after that, a lot of Catholics were shocked and offended to hear the Church teaches:

CCC 841 The Church’s relationship with Muslims. The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.

So every now and then it comes up and shocked and offended people, Catholic and non-Catholic declare this to be heresy or ignorable, or evidence that the Church totally went off the rails at Vatican II with this brand new teaching.

Problem is, it’s not brand new. Pope St. Gregory VII was saying the same thing in 1076 in a letter to the Sultan of Bougie when he wrote:

For there is nothing which Almighty God, who wishes that all men should be saved and that no man should perish, more approves in our conduct than that a man should first love God and then his fellow men … Most certainly you and we ought to love each other in this way more than other races of men, because we believe and confess one God, albeit in different ways, whom each day we praise and reverence as the creator of all ages and the governor of this world.

This is, at the end of the day, an affirmation of common sense and of the Church’s habit of affirming in common with non-Catholics what can be affirmed. If Paul could do it with pagans who worshipped the Unknown God, the Church can still do it today with Muslims who worship the Partly Known God.

For more information, see my articles “Monotheism 101” and “”Monotheism 102“.

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