University platform for research on Islam

Initiated by
the Federation
of European

Supported by
the International
of Catholic

Publisher : Médiaspaul -



Christians and Muslims: Similarities and Diversity

Publisher Overview

Throughout the ages, the Qur’an, the “sacred book”, has often been presented in a polemical form vis-à-vis Jews and Christians, which has given rise to an initial misunderstanding and interreligious relations between Christians and Muslims all too often conflicting, regardless of cultural contexts. The Second Vatican Council, sensitized to the problem of the Islamic-Christian relationship, encouraged dialogue. Paul VI, during his visit to the Holy Places, had perceived a providential and significant opportunity to begin ecumenical dialogue and in 1964 created a new Secretariat dedicated to relations with non-Christians to reflect on the spiritual needs of all people. The result was a text, which became the very Charter of the Catholic Church’s intercultural and interreligious dialogue with all the world’s religions. In today’s world, the modern structuring of national Islam poses a problem for the “living together” of religious communities.

But one can only rejoice at the fact that some governments of Muslim states are establishing diplomatic relations with the Holy See. The Qur’an does not hide its fascination with the character of Jesus, “an exceptional prophet with progressive social teaching”. It occupies an indisputable place in Muslim thought. And Muslims say they believe in the Gospel and are sensitive to its values. Christians must therefore be a “fifth living Gospel” to commit themselves to the service of human rights everywhere in the name of justice and peace. Thus, inter-religious dialogue between Christians and Muslims becomes “spiritual emulation” and fraternal communion.

Présentation de l’éditeur

À travers les âges, le Coran, “livre sacré” s’est souvent présenté en forme polémique vis-à-vis des Juifs et des Chrétiens, ce qui a suscité un malentendu initial et des rapports interreligieux entre chrétiens et musulmans trop souvent conflictuels, quels que soient les contextes culturels. Le Concile Vatican II, sensibilisé au problème de la relation islamo-chrétienne, a favorisé le dialogue. Paul VI, lors de son voyage sur les Lieux Saints, avait perçu une occasion providentielle et significative pour entamer le dialogue œcuménique et créa en 1964 un nouveau Secrétariat dédié aux relations avec les non chrétiens pour réfléchir aux besoins spirituels de tous les hommes. Il en résulta un texte, devenu la Charte même du dialogue interculturel et interreligieux de l’Église catholique avec toutes les religions du monde. Dans notre monde actuel, la structuration moderne de l’Islam national pose problème pour le « vivre ensemble » des communautés religieuses.

Mais on ne peut que se réjouir de voir certains gouvernements d’États musulmans nouer des relations diplomatiques avec le Saint-Siège. Le Coran ne cache pas sa fascination pour le personnage de Jésus, “prophète exceptionnel à l’enseignement social progressiste”. Il occupe une place incontestable dans la pensée musulmane. Et les musulmans disent croire en l’Évangile et être sensibles à ses valeurs. Les chrétiens doivent donc être un « cinquième Évangile vivant » pour s’engager au service des Droits de l’Homme en tous lieux au nom de la justice et de la paix. Ainsi, entre chrétiens et musulmans le dialogue interreligieux devient “émulation spirituelle” et communion fraternelle.

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