Monday, December 25, 2017

Reversing the Reconquista in Cordoba

I have blogged previously on the parallel between the Cordoba Cathedral where Islamist activists are attempting to use prayer attempts to reclaim a church that had been turned into a mosque and is not a church again to the Temple Mount where Muslims refuse the right of jews that they demand for themselves.

A recent update:

Spanish Cathedral Targeted for Reversing the ReconquistaThe Cathedral of Córdoba has become a battleground in the campaign to reduce the influence of the Church in Spain and beyond.

The Cathedral of Córdoba... the cathedral’s ownership is now also a target of protest from both the Spanish left and Muslim activists.
The dispute is part of a long-running campaign to seize the church on the basis that it should not belong to Catholics, but to the whole world...

...The region of southern Spain known as Andalusia, al-Andalus in the Arabic, was the political center of Moorish control of the peninsula.

Moorish culture reached its zenith under the Ummayad Dynasty of rulers who claimed the title of caliph with their capital at Córdoba...But the crown jewel of all al-Andalus was the Great Mosque, the symbol of Ummayad power and glory.

The mosque was commissioned in 784 by Abd ar-Rahman I and was subsequently expanded by his successors until it was able to welcome 40,000 people and was considered one of the largest and greatest architectural achievements in the entire Islamic world...The site of the mosque, however, had very ancient roots. According to archaeologists, after Visigoths captured Córdoba in 572, they established a church on the site that by the time of the Muslim invasion had the title of the Basilica of St. Vincent. It was initially allowed to continue as the last Christian church by agreement with the new Muslim overlords, but, soon, half of it was taken to provide additional prayer space for newly arriving Muslims from Damascus.

The rest of the basilica was eventually “purchased” from the Christians and destroyed in order to build the new Great Mosque...when Córdoba was captured by King Ferdinand, one of the first decisions he had to face was what to do with it.
The new ruler decided to transform the mosque into the city’s new cathedral...The minaret, meanwhile, was converted to a bell tower, with bells brought from Santiago de Compostela. In effect, Ferdinand preserved the mosque’s beauty for posterity.

As Dario Fernandez-Morera has convincingly demonstrated in his important study, The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise: Muslims, Christians and Jews Under Islamic Rule in Medieval Spain (2016), Andalusia was far from a paradise for Christians and Jews, as they suffered from political and social disabilities, had to pay the jizya (religious tax), and endured persecutions and oppression under sharia (Islamic law).

...In 2004 and 2006, Muslims in Spain and elsewhere, mostly recent converts to Islam, petitioned the Holy See to allow Muslim prayers in the cathedral. In 2007, the secretary general of the Arab League, Amr Moussa, used a summit in Córdoba on “Islamophobia” by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to demand publicly that Muslims be granted the right to pray there.

In April 2010, during Holy Week, two Muslims grew violent when asked to stop praying in the cathedral and seriously injured two security guards; and by that August, Islamic groups renewed their calls for the right to worship.

In 2013, an organization called the “Platform for the Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba” secured more than 350,000 names for a petition demanding the seizure of the cathedral, a push heavily promoted by the Spanish socialist newspaper el País...The irony of this, of course, is that political leaders in Spain are actually proposing that Christian churches be seized once more, just as they were 1,200 years ago, and handed to Muslims.

Nina Shea, the director of the Center for Religious Freedom at the Hudson Institute, told the Register, “What is unique in this case is it is not an Islamist government doing this, but a left-leaning one — left-leaning officials who are anti-Catholic, and maybe anti-Muslim too, but they see this as a convenient way of suppressing religion; suppressing Catholicism in Spain.”

Should this alliance succeed, it would be an immense victory — and not just a symbolic one — for the Islamist cause at a time when Europe is already purging its own Christian history.

As Bishop Fernández notes, “They want to reverse the Reconquista.”

No status quo there.

1 comment:

Bill said...

In the spirit of reciprocity, I suppose the Muslims will give Hagia Sophia back to the Greek Orthodox and allow the construction of a new synagogue in Medina.