By turning Hagia Sophia from a museum into a mosque, Turkish authorities have fixed a historical mistake made in 1934, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told reporters on Tuesday.
The Vicar Apostolic of Anatolia has recalled that most Turks want Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia to be a mosque, and as such the decision to reconvert the monument was “not the whim of the president”.
Why is Pope Francis keeping quiet on the Hagia Sophia mosque conversion? That’s the question being asked above all by Orthodox Christians after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan signed a decree Friday handing control of the 6th-century basilica turned neutral museum in 1935 over to the Diyanet, the Turkish Directorate of Religious Affairs.
Last year, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan suggested that Hagia Sophia, formerly the Church of the Holy Wisdom, which used to be an Orthodox Christian cathedral before becoming a mosque and then a museum, could become a mosque again, with free admission.
An Italian Catholic group is backing a new homotransphobia law, saying that in the proposed legislation there is “no real risk to anybody’s fundamental freedoms”.
Cardinal Reinhard Marx has lamented that some Catholics find it “strange” that “the Church has to learn, not only from herself but also from history”.
The Turkish Council of State today postponed its decision on whether to overturn the 86-year-old legal provisions ensuring neutral museum status to the Hagia Sophia, the ancient Christian basilica turned mosque turned museum, and to allow the site to be transformed into a mosque again.
In a recent letter sent to the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria, H.Em. Card. Jean-Claude Hollerich SJ, President of COMECE, expressed his solidarity to the Christian communities in the African country, who are “living a situation of continuous attacks by terrorists, insurgents and militias, that in some cases reaches levels of genuine criminal persecution”.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the head of the world’s Orthodox Christians, has warned that the proposed conversion of the museum of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul into a mosque “will disappoint millions of Christians” and “fracture” the East and the West.
Prague’s Old Town square is one of the most iconic locations in the Czech Republic, that embodies the heart of the well-preserved historic city center, with monuments and buildings going back several centuries.
The leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople (Istanbul), recently expressed his concern over Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s plans to convert the Hagia Sophia basilica into a mosque.
The Holy See’s delegation to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) is calling for freedom and protection of the media, to advance “truth, freedom, justice and solidarity in society”.
In the Angelus today, Pope Francis pressed for a renewed commitment on the part of the world to refugees and the environment post-COVID-19, as he recalled too the “painful reality” of persecuted Christians today, whom he lamented are more numerous even than the martyrs of the early Church.
Ukrainian Christians have weighed in on the push to turn the museum of the mosque-basilica of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul back into a mosque again, saying that the “neutral status” of the monument is the “key to friendship” between the Muslim and Christian religions.
The Armenian Patriarch of Constantinople Sahak II Mashalian has endorsed the idea of restoring the status of a place of worship to the mosque-basilica of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, today visited by tourists as a simple museum.
The Turkish Council of State, in a session next Thursday July 2, will consider opening the monumental complex of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul to Islamic worship again.
The annual COMECE-CCEE Presidencies meeting was held on Wednesday, 3 June 2020 with a special focus on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cardinal Reinhard Marx has criticised those in the Church who “push a relationship of pure obedience to God”, lamenting that they “do not really integrate the idea of freedom into their faith”.
In an OSCE event on intolerance, the Vatican has complained of “de facto discriminatory treatment” of Christians during COVID-19.
The cardinal of Luxembourg has expressed his “disappointment and anger” over the government’s refusal to negotiate the return of public Masses after COVID-19.
A prosecutor in Montenegro has released from detention nine Serbian Orthodox Church clergy whose arrest triggered a diplomatic row with Serbia and clashes between police and protesters.
A Spanish cardinal has launched an extraordinary spray at a town councillor who accused him of endangering public health, in what that councilman called simply an “overreaction”.
The Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union, or COMECE, has today alerted in a press release that “freedom of religion is at stake” in ongoing COVID-19 church closures, at the same time it called on governments to reopen churches in “a clear and non-arbitrary way, in full respect of and in dialogue with ecclesial institutions”, in the words of its General Secretary, Father Manuel Barrios Prieto.
The Higher Committee of Human Fraternity is calling for women and men to pray to God for an end to the coronavirus pandemic.
A French bishop has proposed that priests be allowed to celebrate Masses in private homes in the face of what the country’s Episcopal Conference has called the ongoing “severe confinement” of liturgical life in the nation due to COVID-19.
“Not every occasion needs the Eucharist”, a German prelate has reminded the Church, speaking to the situation under coronavirus restrictions and beyond.
The Italian Bishops have accused the government of “arbitrarily excluding” public Masses from the beginning of the country’s coronavirus reopening.…
“We’ve experienced this before”, East European Catholics who suffered through communism have warned with regard to coronavirus lockdowns.