Bishop of Chichester likens Qur'an threat to Nazi book burning

By staff writers
September 9, 2010

The Anglican Bishop of Chichester, the Rt Rev John Hind, says that a US church's threat to burn the Qur'an reminds him of Nazi book-burning.

The bishop, who is on the traditionalist wing of the Church of England, says he is “horrified” by the 50-member church’s plan to desecrate the holy book of Islam.

“Christians in the West especially need to be aware of the effect of their statements and actions on Christians in other parts of the world,” declared the bishop.

“[It] reminded me of the Nazi burning of Jewish religious texts,” he added.

One of the quotes at the memorial on Bebelplatz in Berlin, where the Nazis publicly destroyed texts they disapproved of, is from doyen German essayist Christian Johann Heinrich Heine. It reads: ""Those who begin by burning books will end by burning people."

Inter-faith advisers for the Diocese of Chichester, the Rev John Chitham and Mary-Jane Burkitt, have urged Christians to offer a clear counterpoint to the threatened actions of the Dove church in Florida, by demonstrating love towards their Muslim neighbours.

“The news that an obscure pastor in the USA is going to publicly burn copies of the [Qur'an] fills us with dismay,” they made clear in a statement.

They went on: “Jesus' message is one of love: to love our neighbour and to love our enemy. Most Muslims are simply our good neighbours. “We are called by Jesus to love and not to hate, and we hope and pray that all Christians... will live up to his call.”


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