Pople Benedict on pluralism

According the Ethan Bronner in The New York Times, “On Sunday in Jordan the pope argued that Christians had a role here in reconciliation, that their very presence eased the strife, and that the decline of that presence could help to increase extremism. When the mix of beliefs and lifestyles goes down, orthodoxy rises, he implied, as does uniformity of the cultural landscape in a region where tolerance is not an outstanding virtue.”

If this is true, it’s a great argument in favor of Muslim immigration into Europe and for the importance of Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, and Sikhs on that continent. I wonder how many people who take their cues from Benedict on cultural issues will recognize that implication.

(By the way, the conclusion that Bonner identifies is more implicit than explicit in the speeches of Benedict that I could find online, e.g., this one and this one.)

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