A quite a few occasions we on KV have reported the rather spineless attitude the Christian churches in the Netherlands (protestant and catholic) take with regard to the encroaching on Dutch society of islam (see here and more recently here, for instance).
Now at last some contrary voices are making themselves heard. The Nederlands Dagblad (NL) reports that a number of prominent members of the Protestant Churches in the Netherlands (PKN) have written a open letter to the board of the synod to express their concern with the dialogue with islam.
The reason [for the letter] is an appeal, sent last year to a large number of churches, entitled A Common Word, in which a great number of prominent muslims call on christians to discuss their common ground.(…)
[The authors of the letter] wonder what concrete steps the islamic world has made to guarantee freedom of religion for christians and other non-muslims in islamic countries. For a level dialogue it is, according to them, necessary that christians and muslims create and defend room for ‘free faith decisions’. (…)
The concerned PKN-members wonder whether that common basis for a dialogue – according to the prominent muslims God/Allah as the One – is so common after all. ‘It isn’t obvious to us that the God that is revealed in the Tenach and has come among us in Jesus Christ, is the same that speaks in the surah’s of the Koran’. Exactly this subject should be the basis of a dialogue with muslims, they feel. Speaking a priori of a common ground only works to muddy the waters, they state.
Well, what do you know? Not exactly fightin’ words, but the good understander needs only half a word, right? This is as strong a statement on reservations about islam as I have ever heard from within the PKN. I applaud the writers of the open letter (which can be read here, in Dutch though) for coming out to say what needs to be said. Whether the PKN will do anything with this open letter is, of course, another matter entirely.