Ex-Muslims, who are now Christians, recently challenged Pope Francis in an open letter about his remarks on Islam. They also asked the pope if they should return to Islam and deny their Christian faith based on his remarks.
In their letter, “From former Muslims who became Catholics, and their friends, to His Holiness Pope Francis, about his attitude towards Islam,” they mention that the pope has ignored their repeated attempts to speak to him and invited others to sign the letter.
First, they addressed the pope’s remarks in his 2013 book, Evangelii Gaudium, (The Joy of the Gospel). In his 168-page exhortation on “the church’s primary mission of evangelization in the modern world,” they questioned paragraphs 252 and 253, wondering why he ignored the historical reality that “Islam came AFTER Christ.”
They boldly asked the pope:
If Islam is a good religion in itself, as you seem to teach, why did we become Catholic?
Do not your words question the soundness of the choice we made at the risk of our lives?
Islam prescribes death for apostates (Quran 4.89, 8.7-11), do you know?
How is it possible to compare Islamic violence with so-called Christian violence? “What is the relationship between Christ and Satan? What union is there between light and darkness? What association between the faithful and the unfaithful?” (2 Cor 6: 14-17)
In accordance with His teaching (Lk 14:26), we preferred Him, the Christ, to our own life. Are we not in a good position to talk to you about Islam?
It’s important to note that ex-Muslims who become Christians are primarily targeted by Islamists who carry out the Qur’an’s instructions to kill everyone who leaves Islam. Leaving and or denying Islam is a form of apostasy and blasphemy, both of which are crimes punishable by death in nearly all Islamic countries.
This is especially poignant in light of the fact that Christians are increasingly being persecuted for their faith primarily by Islamists, as the last two World Watch reports released by Open Doors reveals. The report identifies the most targeted for persecution and death: “MBB” Christians (Muslim Background Believers).
Knowing this, the group of ex-Muslims confronted the pope for remarks he’s made about the Qur’an. As Christians they believe the Word of God is the Bible, not the Qur’an. As such they asked:
How can you speak of peace and endorse Islam, as you seem to do: “To wring from our hearts the disease that plagues our lives (…) Let those who are Christians do it with the Bible and those who are Muslims do it with the Quran. “(Rome, January 20, 2014)? That the Pope seems to propose the Quran as a way of salvation, is that not cause for worry? Should we return to Islam?
Well versed and documented they also addressed the pope’s flawed position on “refugees” and the migration crisis in Europe. They also implored him not to align himself with Islam:
We beg you not to seek in Islam an ally in your fight against the powers that want to dominate and enslave the world, since they share the same totalitarian logic based on the rejection of the kingship of Christ (Lk 4.7).
They go on to focus on the purpose of their letter and of Christianity: the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They, as Christians, seek to lead others to Jesus and to rescue other Muslims from the false and evil ideology of Islam. They write: “The pro-Islam speech of Your Holiness leads us to deplore the fact that Muslims are not invited to leave Islam.”
They go on to mention Christians suffering at the hands of Islam, and name the countries and Christians, specifically, who fail to confront Islamic evil. They asked the pope to publicly address the dangers of Islam:
Allow us to ask Your Holiness to quickly convene a synod on the dangers of Islam. What remains of the Church where Islam has installed itself? If she still has civil rights, it is in dhimmitude, on the condition that she does not evangelize, thus denying her very essence. In the interest of justice and truth, the Church must bring to light why the arguments put forward by Islam to blaspheme the Christian faith are false. If the Church had the courage to do that, we do not doubt that millions, Muslims as well as other men and women seeking the true God, would convert. As you said: “He who does not pray to Christ, prays to the Devil.”(14.03.13) If people knew they were going to Hell, they would give their lives to Christ. (cf. Quran 3.55)
They closed the letter by asking for the pope’s blessing. The letter is available in 13 languages and as a PDF. They ask other Christians to sign their open letter, hoping that with enough signatures the pope will respond. To date he has not. So far, the letter has received 3,900 signatures.