Christians helping migrants should not try to convert them, says Cardinal Muller

Christians helping migrants should not try to convert them, says Cardinal Muller

[Hat-tip to PewSitter: “FrankenChurch’s CDF’s Cd. Muller Says Christians Helping Islamic ‘Refugees’ Shouldn’t Try To Convert Them. Proselytism Would Manipulate Their Consciences?!”]

Catholic News Service
Friday, 26 Feb 2016

Christians assisting migrants should love them “without hidden intentions” and not try to convert them, the prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith has said.

Cardinal Gerhard Müller said said that proselytism “is practically a manipulation of the conscience” and that the church’s mission is to help mankind relate to and love those escaping war and persecution.

The cardinal was speaking at an international conference at the Vatican organised to reflect on Pope Benedict XVI’s first encyclical, Deus Caritas Est, on charity (“God Is Love”) and the relevance of the Christian perspective of love in today’s world.

Cardinal Müller also said that the Church must assist with more than just material needs. He said: “The mission of the church is to give witness to Jesus Christ. It would be a way of despising someone if I said: ‘You only have material needs.”

Jesus’ commandment to love one’s neighbor, he said, is a call for Christians to manifest God’s love to others, particularly through works of charity. However, in addressing the needs of migrants, Christians are called to help “without hidden intentions.”

“We must not use the charity we practice and transform it into an instrument of proselytism,” he said. “An expert Christian knows when it is time to speak about God and when it is best to keep quiet. Sometimes a silent witness is the best witness of the love of God.”

The cardinal noted that in his native Germany, where thousands of migrants from Muslim-majority countries have been received, the authentic witness of love through charity has caused migrants to inquire about the Christian faith without imposing one’s beliefs on them.

“There are among these migrants, the majority of whom are Muslim, who ask, ‘Why are Christians — and not our fellow Muslims — helping us?’ The love of neighbor is a starting point to the love of God because God, through Jesus Christ, is the cause and essence of our love toward our neighbor,” the cardinal said.

The commitment of charity and love toward one’s neighbor, he said, must be sustained by prayer or risks becoming “blind activism and a fanatical desire to reform the world.”

Using religious differences as a pretext to exclude others is contrary to faith because “God does not exclude anyone,” he added. Excluding others “builds a wall that separates us from God; this is the original sin.”

Cardinal Muller said that instead, the church’s mission is “to help overcome these walls” that only serve to exclude humankind “from both God and neighbor.”

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2 comments on “Christians helping migrants should not try to convert them, says Cardinal Muller

  1. “Using religious differences as a pretext to exclude others is contrary to faith because “God does not exclude anyone,” he added. Excluding others “builds a wall that separates us from God; this is the original sin.”

    More Vatican II modernist rot promulgated by a conciliar prelate. The head of the CDF no less.
    Muller’s “wall” analogy sounds eerily similar to Bergoglio’s metaphor about walls on his press conference on the plane coming back from Mexico.
    No coincidence there ha?!
    Benedict XVI, JPII, and Paul VI are just as much to blame for the relativist, indifferentist and liberal state the Church is in today as Bergoglio.
    Jorge has taken it to new lows, but these guys that I’ve mentioned above laid the seeds.

  2. Hey, Jorge, we got some homeless strangers coming around. I’m making a list of things we can offer them:
    food — check
    shelter — check
    Jesus Christ ………………

    Huh? What was that last one? Nope. No way. We Catholics never push our religion on anyone.

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