Red, the color of blood, is also the color of the vestments worn by Catholic Cardinals. Each Catholic Cardinal wears red to signify his willingness to contend for the Catholic Faith even, in the words of Raymond Cardinal Burke, “to the outpouring of his blood.’ Not all Cardinals, apparently, are able to live up to this high calling when the going gets tough. In a recent CNN interview, Catholic Cardinal-Patriarch Nasrallah Sfeir can be found contending not so much for the Catholic Faith as for Islam. Why would a Catholic Cardinal consider it important to cast Islam in a positive light when his duty is to explain the clear-cut distinctions between Catholicism and other religions? Some say Cardinal Sfeir is “suffering” but not from persecution.
Rather, he is “suffering” from an accute case of dhimmitude.
Being a voice of Christianity in a country where Islam is approaching majority status, as is the case in Cardinal Sfeir’s country of Lebanon, is certainly no easy task. However, considering the depth of commitment required of a Cardinal, we might at least expect him to refrain from defending Islam with CNN.
[…] Islam is, of course, a religion that promotes worshipping the goodness in life, worshipping God and being fair to others.
Those words are from Cardinal Sfeir as he explained what he admits is a “tragic situation” for Christians in Lebanon. His words seem to betray the high calling so clearly spelled out recently by Cardinal Burke.
Although not every Cardinal will be called to give his life in red martyrdom for the sake of the Church and, above all, for the sake of the exercise of the ministry of the Vicar of Christ on earth, he is called daily to be intrepid, to give his life in white martyrdom, steadfastly and courageously defending the Catholic Church and her holy faith in the care of Saint Peter and his successors.
What Cardinal Burke explains above is the true role of a Catholic Cardinal. Cardinal Sfeir, on the other hand, seems content with dhimmitude.
A non-Muslim community that is forced to accept dhimmitude is condemned to live in a system that will protect it from violent jihad on only one condition: if it is completely subservient to a Muslim master. In return for that subservience, the community is granted limited rights, although dhimmis could be capriciously subjected to such depredations as mass slavery, abductions, and deportations.
While Lebanon is not yet to the point of being a Muslim-majority country enslaving, abducting, or deporting Christians, it is important to point out that attitudes like Cardinal Sfeir’s are attitudes of contentment with dhimmitude that pave the way for the advancement of Islam which itself results consistently in more oppression of non-Muslim peoples.
Cardinal Sfeir tendered his resignation to the Vatican some time ago, but the Vatican has yet to accept it. Considering that Pope Benedict XVI has been consistent in every opportunity available to address the plight of Christians under Islam, emphasizing the need for divided Christians to unite and for Christians and Jews to work together, we can believe that a suitable replacement for Cardinal Sfeir is being sought by the Vatican, and one that will actually contend for the true peace offered by Christians, Jews and other peace-loving people rather than the false peace of dhimmitude.