Catholic Archbishop Refuses to Baptize Muslim Converts

Morocco's government says it practices religious tolerance but the Christian presence is low-key. St. Peter's Cathedral in Rabat does not ring its bells and churchgoers are all foreign.

Moroccan Christians worshipping there would risk arrest and Archbishop Vincent Landel told Reuters he would not baptize a Moroccan convert as it is against the law.

From HERE.


JohnG. said…
If this guy believed what he preaches, I.E. the necessity of baptism to be saved, he wouldn't care of this unfair law. Or he would baptize him secretly.
Anonymous said…
I can understand that the good archbishop is concerned for the safety of himself and his existing flock. But shouldn't he (and all Catholics) be more concerned about saving souls than lives? Of course I really shouldn't talk, since I'm evangelizing from the safety of my home computer and I am no longer living in a Muslim country.
Jonathan said…
Maybe there's more to this story -- perhaps the archbishop himself doesn't baptize muslim converts, but that doesn't preclude having other people carry out baptisms for him.
Anonymous said…
My sentiments exactly. One does not need to be a bishop or priest to baptize. I am sure it will be accomplished.
Abu Daoud said…
I'm sorry guys, I have some bad news. If the bishop has said publicly that he won't baptize then neither will hte priests under him. They will just point the inquirer to evangelical churches. This happens all the time and is no secret among missionaries.

Of course you have to be careful, because then they might point the figure and complain about evangelicals 'Proselytizing'. Why won't the Catholics use the real word--evangelizing? It's a cheap shot.
Anonymous said…
There may be another reason such as pseudo-converts from Islam who have been used to entrap Christians.

Someone who genuinely seeks baptism but died (or was martyred) before they were baptized in water is regarded as having had the "baptism of desire".

It is important to pin down our Muslim friends in the West on what they mean by 'Islam teaches no compulsion in religion'. As them "Do YOU condemn the application of any civil penalty, or human coercion on adults who wish to leave Islam for another religion or none - in any country."
Jonathan said…
AD, I was afraid that might be the case, but I was just hoping.

In reference to what "Anonymous" posted, is entrapment through faked-conversion ever an issue? That would certainly make me nervous about working for conversions
Abu Daoud said…
John, yes, false conversion is indeed a danger. It is used by the government, but usually in terms fo sending a person to ask for information or whatever. I don't know of any government agent really going in the long run and infiltrating a church. But it is different with the Islamists, some of them have done this--or at least so the stories go. It is hard in this area to separate fact from fiction. Arab culture is rife with conspiracy theory, and Christians here are not exempt.
Anonymous said…

I agree with Abu Daoud and Bintullah. Personally I find it scandalous to refuse principally to baptize who is asking for baptism. Evangelization is not an act of aggression, it is an act of LOVE, it is giving to the other the best we have, Christ. As Salome Bintullah said: it must be done discretely, it is not a provocation, nor propaganda. It is only an act of love, a service, for those who ask it.

Proselytism is to take advantage of the weakness of someone to FORCE HIM or HER to be Christian (or Muslim etc.). We, Catholics, are accusing the Evangelical to make proselytism: it could be a too easy accusation, just to justify our lack of conviction, our lack of FAITH in Jesus Christ, the Unique Saviour of every person.

Father Samir Khalil SAMIR, SJ
Saint Dativus said…
I can understand the Bishop's dilema, however Muslims are not shy when people convert to Islam. In fact there are many Christians who convert to Islam and are not persecuted or killed, thousands of Muslims convert to Christianity and they have to live in fear of been either persecuted or ostracized from society so they cannot openly publicize their conversion. We are an Evangelistic faith whether we deny it or not. If St Paul would have had this 'prudent' mentality then would Christianity had spread? As a Catholic I will share the Gospel with whomever and that includes Muslims. If you truly love Christ then you want to share it with those around you in word and deed. We commit a diservice if we 'hide our faith under a bushel'. Go to the Blessed Sacrament, pray for one hour and you ask Christ. 'Lord am I suppose to spread your word to others including Muslims?' Surely U will get your reply. Beware there is to much compromise and feebleness. Pope Benedict XVI gave us a wonderful example by publicly Baptizing 'Christian'Allam Maghdi, I think Bishops and Priests should courageously follow his example. God Bless U all. :)

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