The first thing that made “the Holy family”, she fled. 2016 years later, in the middle East began to be Christians

The outcome right before our eyes

This exile, which will soon lead to the fact that part of the Middle East will remain without Christian parishes. Christians are the community, leaving the roots in the first Christian associations.

Even the Syrian Orthodox Church is in danger of extinction. She is the only Church in the world, where still lives the Aramaic language — the language in which he said the son of a carpenter from Nazareth. Within a few years will probably occur in the future. And the world will be a poorer and less diverse.

A historic milestone

What groups of peoples and religious communities are moved, is not some new phenomenon. This rarely happens voluntarily, often as a result of coercion and expulsion. What is new is the recognition that this is happening in our time, which we have so long associated with the world of tolerance and human rights.

Unfortunately, this is no more. Anyway, this is only half the truth about the most important trends of the 21st century.

Data concerning the number of Christians in the Middle East, is not accurate. However, we know that in countries such as Lebanon and Egypt, there are still large Christian minority. They probably will continue to exist in the foreseeable future. And in Iraq and Syria the number of Christians are becoming less and less, and it can be predicted that they would soon be an endangered minority. Palestinian Christians may be in the same situation: over the last forty years, if you believe the Catholic News Agency, their number was reduced to one percent with approximately 40% of the population of approximately four million people.

S. Turberry Berit (Berit S. Thorbjørnsrud), editor of a collection of articles, “Christians in the middle East: a battle for existence” (De kristne i Midtøsten: Kampen for tilhørighet), formulated in the newspaper Vårt Land:

“After 2000 years of the Christian community may disappear in Syria, Iraq and Palestine. It will be a historic milestone”.

Lost faith in the future

There are different reasons for this situation.

In Iraq and Syria war, turning Christians into refugees. Quite a paradox that many of them now feel more at risk compared to the time when Saddam Hussein (Saddam Hussein) and Hafez al-Assad (Hafez Al Assad) with an iron hand to rule over these countries.

At that time, at least, there was respect for the rights of the minority. In Palestine as the reason for the move called the economic problem and the Israeli occupation. And among the Christians of Egypt and Lebanon, there is a big uncertainty, when there is an opportunity to leave. The boundary between discrimination and persecution for those subjected to them, can easily move. Centuries of coexistence among various religious and ethnic groups are ready to disappear. Growing terrible force of sectarianism.

Middle Eastern Christians have lost faith in the future for themselves and their descendants in the region, where in many places they are the indigenous population. And each leaving life becomes harder for those who remain.

We see the destructive relationship between real fear and those factors that cause other populations of the region to leave their homes: incorrect political and economic governance, war and conflict, as pointed out by senior lecturer Berit S. Thorbjornsson in the scientific journal Apollon.

In addition, Christians often have co-religionists in Western countries, which can be run in order to achieve a better life. But the most important for many is the powerful polarization taking place among Muslims. This is where we best see big changes.

A deadly development

Because the careful consideration we are talking about the concept of identity.

Thanks to the latest and darkest of European history we in our part of the world in recent decades have received vaccination against nationalism in its purest form. But at the present time all the new groups of people let blooms understandable, but it is equally dangerous nationalism. Quite ironic that he is strongest in those countries where migrants are almost there.

In large areas of Europe, there is a search of national values and national identity, which we have not thought before.

In the middle East, Islamic identity is constantly increasing. Secular Arab nationalism, which for several decades dominated political and social thought, has died. It is replaced by what you believe as a citizen of society.

This is a dangerous development. Last but not least for the middle East countries that continue to operate in a certain way. For moderate forces the prospects frightening, if only the bearer identity is the need to be a Muslim.

Minorities often were the guarantee that the identity was determined by the national government, not religion. Such a definition also helps democracy where the religious dimension, by nature, is often anti-democratic. The Christian minority has also contributed as a Builder of the bridge and balancing the contractor over ethnic identity and religion.

Killing identity

In many key States in the Middle East religion is currently the only way to protect yourself when it is really necessary, says Lars Akerhus (Lars Akerhaug) in his interesting book “the Last Christmas in Cairo” (Siste jul i Kairo). This has dangerous consequences for minorities, and it includes Christians.

“Killing identity” (Identitet som dreper) — Lebanese writer Amin the Maal (Amin Maalout) named one of his critical essay. Based on the difficult events of the Lebanese civil war, he in 2000 claimed that the minority is in danger when exposed to the dangers of your own identity:

“For me, history fully shows that Islam has great potential for coexistence and a fertile interaction with other cultures. But recent history also shows that the possibility of recurrence, and that the potential for a long time in the future will remain just a potential.”

A year later after it was written, under attack from extremists attacked the twin towers in new York. Three years later, Baghdad fell to the disastrous ideas of the crusade the American President. And 14 years later was created a Caliphate on the territory of what used to be Iraq and Syria.

Far the message of Bethlehem

The contradictions were becoming stronger and increasingly violent sectarianism. So the requirement of a common identity irreconcilable came to the fore. Vintage and not perfect coexistence between different ethnic and religious groups ready to disappear. It’s happening fast. And comes at a time when the guard stands our society.

Multicolored mosaic of people in the Middle East collapses. And, unfortunately, we know that disappearing right now the Christians never will come back. This means that there will be another middle East with the face, lost one of its most peaceful to hell.

Why so much silence Church bells. It shows the difference. Last but not least the night sounds of the message of peace for the first time sung over Bethlehem, but it sounds far away.