Sunday, December 03, 2006

European Press: Pope No Longer Hated Figure in Turkey
Zaman Daily News

Pope Benedict XVI’s historic visit to Turkey attracted worldwide attention and hundreds of international journalists.

According to the European press, the pope went to Turkey as a vilified figure but emerged a symbol of tolerance.

The Times of London recalled reactions to the pope’s remarks on Islam a few months ago in Germany but drew attention to the pope’s admirable statements in Istanbul before departing for Rome.

The Times added that the pope surprised many with his supportive remarks on Turkey’s EU membership and speaking in Turkish during prayers in Ephesus.

The article also quoted Vatican sources saying that Turkish reaction to the pope was not reflected in the Arab world and they were still waiting for a direct apology from the pontiff.
The Guardian wrote that the pope had convinced most Turkish people of his wishes to foster warmer relations with the Muslim world.

The German press called the pope’s visit a very successful one.

“The pope enchanted Turks,” wrote Die Welt.

I was very happy to see this and other articles like it. Of course, in our imperfect world, there was the expected voice of dissent. One came out of Jordan with the complaint that the Pope still had not apologized appropriately nor had he done enough. Done enough what? My thought to the speaker is "how about YOU doing something to bring about unity and peace instead of continuing the nonproductive critique. There is a lot of work to do and a good place to start would be to disavow terrorism and the suicide bombers that kill so many innocent people. Also, the same voice out of Jordan suggested that the trip would have been more effective had the Pope gone to Iran or Saudi Arabia. Well, since the trip had been planned since before the Sept. 12th speech, the where really wasn't a factor and even suggesting it proves the speaker's unwillingness to listen with an open mind and heart.

1 comment:

Sioux said...

What a wonderful visit!

Bless you this Advent season.