Sri Lanka's cardinal calls terrorists 'animals' and says 'punish them mercilessly'
It's not often that you hear from churchmen any signal of righteous anger, but on Sri Lanka, which has a vibrant and growing Church, there is one.
Here's what Breitbart News picked up from the local presses:
Sri Lanka's highest-ranking Catholic prelate called on the government to hunt down the attackers behind the lethal bombings that killed nearly 300 people Sunday and to "punish them mercilessly."
"I would also like to ask the government to hold a very impartial strong inquiry and find out who is responsible behind this act and also to punish them mercilessly, because only animals can behave like that," said Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, the archbishop of Colombo.
It's not every day that you see a churchman with a spine.
The normal response in these days is anodyne pro forma deplorings, along with peace and flowers offerings to the supporters of radical Islamism, or lots and lots of cover-ups and denials about what the attacks were really about, so as not to offend the perpetrators. Mark Steyn described the dreck going on very well here and here, and been going on for nearly two decades. Here's a passage from what he wrote in the wake of 9/11:
Are you a Western leader of the Judaeo-Christian or Agnostic-Atheist persuasion? Want to issue a public statement on how much you respect and value Islam as a peaceful religion of moderation and tolerance? Take a number, pal. The line's longer than the waiting-list at a Birmingham hospital. The Queen has spoken of her respect for 'the Islamic community', so's the Pope, and Tony Blair. President Bush does it at least a couple of times a day. A week ago, he hosted the White House's first ever Ramadan dinner — not a banquet, that would have been insensitive, and the whole point of the administration's 'Ramadan public relations offensive' is, according to The Washington Post , to 'highlight its sensitivity to Islamic tradition'. At this difficult time, politicians are sensitive about being thought insensitive, so there's no point being too sensitive about how ostentatiously you advertise your sensitivity.
The Sri Lankan archbishop obviously has gotten tired of the niceties as more than one of the churches he shepherds mops off the blood from the walls.
He indicates he knows what the story here is — that Christianity is under fire, attacks on Christian worldwide have doubled since 2017, and converts to Catholicism (and other Christian faiths) are being mowed down mercilessly in their churches, that he is a shepherd, that good shepherds (as Jesus said) care about their flock, and hideous Islamist predators who are perpetrating this have adopted evil as their religion. Churches, good, Islamist terrorists, bad; this is not rocket science. Yet in our enervated age, statements like these draw headlines.
It's as if the cardinal has actually read the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraphs 2302–2317. The Church teaching saying evil is to be confronted is still there.
No wonder Christianity is a growing faith in Sri Lanka. There aren't many empty pews in those parts.
It goes to show that leaders who stand for something are going to have people paying attention to them — and vigorous, growing churches.
Maybe the namby-pamby leftists who dominate our enfeebled and empty-pew churches can put two and two together and get a clue.