Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Alliance Between Muslims and (Covert) Methodists Questioned

Here's a press release from the Institute on Religion and Democracy that should be especially disturbing to United Methodists. Of course, if decisions of recent years by the United Methodist leadership on such matters as abortion, homosexuality, and the authority of Holy Scripture haven't already driven Methodists from the pews, this might not have much effect either.

Here's the press release...

The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) has announced a new partnership with British-based Muslim Aid, with which it hopes to spend up to $15 million on joint relief projects around the world.

Muslim Aid prominently advertises its Islamic mission, such as a major initiative helping needy Muslims fulfill their “Qurbani” obligation for animal sacrifices. “All Muslims are required to offer the sacrifice of a small animal such as a goat, or offer jointly with others the sacrifice of a larger animal such as a cow,” the Muslim Aid web site explains. “This act of sacrifice signifies the sacrifice Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) was prepared to make when requested by God to sacrifice his son Ismail.” Last year, Muslim Aid spent over a million dollars on Qurbani programs in over 59 countries.

In contrast, UMCOR’s web site seems to contain no references to God, Jesus Christ or the Bible. UMCOR’s operating budget last year was nearly $90 million. Muslim Aid’s expenditures in 2005 were about $17 million.

Mark Tooley, IRD’s Director of UMAction commented:

"Muslim Aid will be working with a liberal Protestant agency that is quiet about its religious beliefs but which almost certainly shares the political perspective of Muslim Aid leaders and supporters."

"Muslim Aid is very open about the faith that motivates its relief and development work. UMCOR, in contrast, is largely silent about Jesus Christ and the Bible. No wonder there is so such easy agreement between them.
United Methodists and others might ponder why Muslim Aid freely professes its service to Allah, while UMCOR seems to prefer avoid mention of Jesus Christ."