Progress in Egypt, plans for Rome
But here is some positive news from Egypt, mentioning the well-known Abouna Zakarias as well as some evangelical and Anglican leaders. The whole article is worth a read, but here is one significant section:
Surveying the big picture, Sameh believes a religious earthquake is shaking the Middle East, leading to many new conversions from Islam. "For years, there were only hundreds converting from Islam to Christianity. Very confidential, very low key," he said. "Now [converts] are writing their stories. They are in chatrooms. The voice of converts for the first time is being heard. The numbers are beyond estimation. It's an iceberg. If you hear a thousand, then there are 100,000 beneath the surface."
Sameh traces the roots of this evangelistic surge to a church-based awakening in the 1970s. Menes Abdul Noor (then pastor at Kasr El Dobara) and Coptic Orthodox priest Zakarias Botross were among the few Christian leaders willing to baptize new believers with a Muslim background. Coptic Orthodoxy represents up to 6 million people in Egypt, while Protestants number fewer than 250,000.
Fair enough. But the main point of the article is that the Egyptian government won't allow MBB's (Muslim-background believers) to change their ID cards from Muslim to Christian. But still, the fact that their voice is being heard it important.But then we have some strident and confident promises, courtesy of Hamas (with whom Jimmy Carter will meeting soon), from one of their MP's, Yunis al-Astal:
Yunis Al-Astal: Allah has chosen you for Himself and for His religion, so that you will serve as the engine pulling this nation to the phase of succession, security, and consolidation of power, and even to conquests thorough da'wa and military conquests of the capitals of the entire world. Very soon, Allah willing, Rome will be conquered, just like Constantinople was, as was prophesized by our Prophet Muhammad. Today, Rome is the capital of the Catholics, or the Crusader capital, which has declared its hostility to Islam, and has planted the brothers of apes and pigs in Palestine in order to prevent the reawakening of Islam – this capital of theirs will be an advanced post for the Islamic conquests, which will spread through Europe in its entirety, and then will turn to the two Americas, and even Eastern Europe.
I believe that our children or our grandchildren will inherit our Jihad and our sacrifices, and Allah willing, the commanders of the conquest will come from among them. Today, we instill these good tidings in their souls, and by means of the mosques and the Koran books, and the history of our Prophets, his companions, and the great leaders, we prepare them for the mission of saving humanity from the hellfire on the brink of which they stand.
And if that happens then Rome will go the way of Constantinople. Upon being Islamized its status as a center of art, culture, and education will evaporate. For what is Constantinople now but a the dirty, industrialized hub of Istanbul, with tourism due to its great history, but little else. Rome will go the way of Alexandria, formerly a home to philosophers, artists, and theologians, but now home to...well, not much.