Being a priest has become a dangerous job

Being a priest has become a dangerous job, by Ed West.

After the war, Europeans thought they could escape history, and retire to a secular, progressive world in which historical conflicts of identity would be a thing of the past. But instead of fascism and communism, even older, more retrograde ideologies have sprung up, and history goes on.

Christianity might be dying of indifference in western Europe but elsewhere it remains a living part of history, and that story includes persecution.

Being a priest or a religious remains a dangerous task – earlier this year four nuns in Yemen were murdered, while a number of priests and bishops have been killed in Syria; likewise in Iraq, where some 60 churches were bombed during the conflict, the worst incident being the 2010 Our Lady of Salvation massacre where 52 men, women and children were slaughtered by a then little known outfit called the Islamic State of Iraq. …

France has several thousand churches still functioning to some degree or other (it has 40,000 in total, but population decline and secularisation put pay to many long ago) so it would be physically impossible to guard them in the way synagogues are now sadly protected in that country. …

The hierarchy of the main European churches, chiefly the Catholic Church, have been explicit in recent years in supporting mass immigration, its bishops just as filled with moral certainty as the secular supporters of open borders. It is very hard to argue against this Christian argument, yet I fear they have made a historical mistake. Like other utopian schemes that vaguely appeal to people raised on the language of Christianity, this will not end well.