Thursday, April 14, 2005

The Next Pope and Islamic Prophecy

The Next Pope and Islamic Prophecy

By Steven Stalinsky | April 14, 2005

Following Pope John Paul II's visit to the Middle East in 2000 and 2001, some prominent Muslim leaders openly discussed the future dominance of Islam in Europe, including conquesting the Vatican.

While the identity of the next pope is decided, one of the pressing issues he will have to deal with is the growing Muslim community in Europe, part of which have Islamist inclinations. As the New York Times reported this week, the next pope will be facing 'increasing secularism in Europe, contrasting with the religious revival in the Islamic world… and the rising number of Muslim immigrants in Europe.'

Saudi Sheikh Muhammad bin Abd Al-Rahman Al-'Arifi, Imam of the mosque of King Fahd Defense Academy, discussed the coming Muslim conquest of the Vatican. Citing a Hadith in an article posted on the Kalemat website in 2002, he stated: '… We will control the land of the Vatican; we will control Rome and introduce Islam in it. Yes, the Christians, who carve crosses on the breasts of the Muslims … will yet pay us the Jiziya [poll tax paid by non-Muslims under Muslim rule], in humiliation, or they will convert to Islam…'

Sheikh Yousef Al-Qaradhawi, spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood and head of The European Council for Fatwa and Research and the founder of European based International Council of Muslim Scholars (Imams) posted a fatwa on the website, in 2002 about the 'signs of the victory of Islam' in Europe.

Also citing a well-known Hadith, Al-Qaradhawi wrote: '… The Prophet Muhammad was asked: 'What city will be conquered first, Constantinople or Romiyya?' He answered: 'The city of Hirqil [i.e. the Byzantine emperor Heraclius] will be conquered first' - that is, Constantinople… Romiyya is the city called today 'Rome,' the capital of Italy."

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