Putin’s elevation of Crimea to Russia’s Holy Land status baffles historians

President Vladimir Putin’s elevation of Crimea to the status of Russia’s Holy Land has prompted puzzlement and scorn from historians and commentators. Crimea for Russians is “like the Temple Mount in Jerusalem” for Muslims and Jews, Putin said, and would be regarded this way “from now on and forever.” Vladimir the Great was baptized in […]

Pope says it is wrong to equate Islam with violence

Pope Francis said on Sunday that equating Islam with violence was wrong and called on Muslim leaders to issue a global condemnation of terrorism to help dispel the stereotype. Francis, the leader of 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, told reporters aboard his plane returning from a visit to Turkey that he understood why Muslims were offended […]

Pope Francis visits Istanbul Mosques

ISTANBUL, Turkey – Pope Francis continues his visit to Turkey this morning, a Muslim nation that has been a crossroads of religious faith, and sometimes conflict, for centuries. It’s the second-day of his three-day visit. Francis is only the fourth pope to have made the trip. He was greeted at Istanbul airport by the Orthodox […]

In Turkey Pope Calls for Muslim Opposition to Islamic State

In his first visit as pope to a predominantly Muslim country, Pope Francis said in Turkey on Friday that inter-religious dialogue, more than just military action, was required to combat Islamic State militants who are attacking Christians and other religious minorities along the country’s southern border. “To this end, it is essential that all citizens […]

First-ever Muslim prayers service at Washington National Cathedral

By Pamela Constable In a corner of Washington National Cathedral, several hundred Muslim worshipers and other invited guests gathered Friday afternoon for a first-ever recitation of weekly Muslim prayers at the iconic Christian church and to hear leaders of both faiths call for religious unity in the face of extremist violence and hate. The Arabic […]

Who will be Pope Benedict’ s replacement ?

Technically, any male Catholic is eligible to be elected pope. But traditionally, the cardinals choose one of their own. For the princes of the church — the cardinals — the sudden resignation of a pope can be more of a shock than the death of one. And it is they who now have to choose […]

Rai, Syrian officials attend Yazigi’s inauguration ceremony

Lebanon’s Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and all the East Cardinal Beshara Boutros Rai participated in  the   inauguration ceremony of the new Greek Orthodox Patriarch of the Levant and Antioch Youhanna X Yazigi , which was  held on Sunday at the Church of the Holy Cross in Syria’s Qassaa , in the heart of Damascus.