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August 20th, 2010
07:45 PM ET

N.Y. Archbishop may be part of Islamic center dialogue

Archbishop Timothy Dolan, leader of the Roman Catholic Church in New York, said Friday he would be honored to join the conversation around the controversial proposal to build an Islamic center near ground zero.

In a blog post, the Archbishop stressed the importance of not framing the debate as a choice between healing and religious freedom. He said both duties are good and necessary.

"While I'm hardly an expert in this area, and there are certainly far more competent voices than mine, the Archdiocese of New York would be honored to be part of any such conversations," the influential prelate wrote about the center.

"The hot-heads on either side must not dominate," he added.

Leaders of the New York Islamic center say they plan to build the $100 million, 13-story facility called Park51 - formerly known as Cordoba House - on property it already owns two blocks from the site of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks on the World Trade Center.

Developer Sharif El-Gamal has said the facility would include a 500-seat performing arts center, a lecture hall, a swimming pool, a gym, a culinary school, a restaurant and a prayer space for Muslims.

Some New Yorkers oppose the project, saying that an Islamic center near the site of the attack by Islamic extremists that killed more than 2,700 people is a painful affront. A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll released August 11 showed nationwide opposition to the proposed facility at 68 percent.

Dolan did not say where he thinks the center should be built.

"Although I have no strong sentiment about what should be decided about the eventual where of the Islamic Center, I do have strong convictions about how such a discussion should be reached: civilly and charitably," the Archbishop wrote.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Bishops • Catholic Church • Interfaith issues • Islam • New York • United States

soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. ICEMAN

    I'M NOT SAYING YALL ARE THE ONLY BAD ONE WHO CALLED THEMSELVES THE TRUE CHURCH...THE PROTESTANTS KILLED OFF ALMOST ALL THE INDIANS...... BUT THIS IS OVER YOUR CHURCH KNOWS IT'S UGLY HISTORY " THE WORLD KNOWS YOUR CHURCH HISTORY" IT'S NOT BECAUSE OF YESHUA IT'S BECAUSE OF ALL THE KILLINGS YALL DID.......DO YOU HAVE THE HISTORY CHANNEL OR BETTER YET GO TO http://WWW.HISTORY.COM I THINK THAT'S IT. THEY MAY HAVE SOME VIDEOS ON IT . FOR ME I LOVE HISTORY "WORLD HISTORY"......LOL STILL CAN GET OVER THE 2&4 COMMANDMENT YALL OPENLY BROKE BUT IT'S OK LIKE THE RCC SAID IT'S CHURCH IS ABOVE THE BIBLE. LOL

    August 28, 2010 at 8:47 am |
    • CatholicMom

      Why would the Catholic Church give the Bible to the world if it didn’t love the Bible and its Truth?

      Jesus did not tell his Apostles to go and write the Bible now. The Books were nonetheless, written. The Church recognized the inspired Books of the Bible because She recognized Herself within the pages of certain Books and those were the Books that make up the Bible.

      This could not happen without the guiding and guarding of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit was given to the Church.

      People receive the Holy Spirit when Baptized, through the Sacrament of Baptism. Many claim to know a better and easier way to receive the Holy Spirit….it is a way other than the Way that Jesus Christ pronounced.

      Satan is happy when people reject Jesus’ Way.

      August 28, 2010 at 10:56 am |
  2. ICEMAN

    JUST A LITTLE INFO..THE title for the pope Vicar of Christ, "Vicarius Filii Dei " hey add it up and see what number you come up with. :-0

    August 28, 2010 at 8:36 am |
  3. ICEMAN

    LOL THE ONE THING YOU CAN'T DO IS DESTROY SOMEONE'S FAITH......YALL TRIED, THIS IS YOUR HISTORY. OH LET SEE ALSO ANSWER ME THIS " PS I ALREADY KNOW THIS ONE, BUT WHY DID YALL CHANGE YESHUA'S COLOR FROM DARKSKINED TO WHITE?

    August 28, 2010 at 8:36 am |
  4. ICEMAN

    OH AND THE ROCK WASN'T PETER IT WAS THE CONFESSION.....

    August 25, 2010 at 9:21 am |
    • ICEMAN

      Yall missed the whole point of that passage. If the Church is in you HOW IN THE WORLD IS SOMETHING IN YOU GOING TO START WITH PETER?
      WHEN YOU GET THE REVELATION THAT YESHUA IS THE CHRIST, SON OF THE LIVING GOD. THIS IS WHERE IT STARTS,YALL GLORIFY MAN AND NOT GOD.....

      August 25, 2010 at 10:47 am |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Where are the documents for your statements? [books written by anti-Catholics are not authentic documents….]

      Jesus Christ founded the Catholic Church; He made Peter the first Pope. He instituted the Sacraments, with the Church as the dispenser of them as a means by which we receive His graces. If we were not sinners, Jesus Christ would not have founded His Church, with Himself as the Cornerstone; We would not have needed Him or the Church if we were not sinners; but He provided everything His creatures need to live by His Word and to not fall into error.

      He promised the Apostles that He would remain with His Church down through the ages and that satan would not prevail against Her. The Church is guided and guarded by the Holy Spirit. The Popes, down through time, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, have upheld the Truth concerning Faith and Morals; Truth does not change over time; the Holy Spirit brings the Church into the fullness of Truth. What was good and right in the days when Jesus walked with the Apostles, telling them to hold fast to everything He taught them [Sacred Tradition, not tradition of men], is still good and right today.

      Sacred Scripture does condemn in many places the traditions of man (having to do with practices about not healing on the Sabbath, hoarding money, not helping Samaritans, etc), but those have NOTHING to do with the Traditions Paul is talking about in the following verses which explain Sacred Tradition:

      1 Corinthians 11:2: I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I have delivered them to you"
      2 Thessalonians 2:15: So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter.
      2 Thessalonians 3:6:Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is living in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us.

      The Catholic Church is the One which has the Truth and maintains it with Authority given Her by Jesus Christ; this is how the Church grew in Her infancy for the first almost 400 years of Her life without the Bible which the Church eventually put together under one cover. It was man who took the Bible, threw out books, changed it to fit his thinking, left the Church, disregarded Sacred Tradition, and refused Authority; is it any wonder now that people outside the Catholic Church can’t decide what they believe because they can’t find that ‘feels right to me feeling’ in those 30,000+ ecclesial communities anymore. Sort of like ‘too many flavors to choose from’ makes some forget that all they really want or need in life is the Original to be satisfied to the fullest.

      August 25, 2010 at 5:29 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Jesus did not give the keys to a confession.

      August 25, 2010 at 10:49 pm |
    • ICEMAN

      PETER ISN'T IMPORTANT IT'S WHAT HE SAID....OH HERE WE GO..NEVERMIND JUST STOP GOING TO A FRIENDLY SITE AND READ UP ON YOUR HISTORY..
      I'M MAKING STUFF UP HUH WELL HOW ABOUT YOU ASK TEH
      PROTESTANTS, MUSLIMS, PAGAN SLAVS, BALTS, JEWS, RUSSIANS, GREEK ORTHODOX CHRISTIANS, MONGOLS, CATHARS, HUSSITES, WALDENSIANS, OLD PRUSSIANS, AND SO ON THESE ARE SOME OF THE DIFFERENT KINDS OF PEOPLE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH FORCED INTO BELIVING IN EUROPEAN CHRISTIANITY........YESHUA'S CHURCH, I THINK NOT

      August 27, 2010 at 2:33 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Why should I go to a site that is not ‘friendly’? There are plenty of ‘unfriendly’ voices right here….why would I seek out more…?

      Protestants went off on their own….no one forced them to stay and believe in the Catholic Church….before them….Jews listened to Jesus and said His words were too hard for them to accept so some left and continued living as they were…[not all turned away, needless to say].

      Look at the world today….tell me, where are the people who are being forced to believe in the Catholic Church? Ask the billion Catholics…are you being forced to be Catholic? Anyone who does not believe cannot be forced to believe. People come and people go for every reason you can imagine…they all have a freewill.

      Anyone who goes to a ‘friendly’ site will get the Truth about the Catholic Church; they can decide for themselves if it is the House of God or not. They can read history if they want. They can compare notes and decide. They can visit a Catholic Church and see for themselves how it compares to what the Bible tells them. If they have any desire for Truth it won’t take them long to see that it is what they have been missing in their lives….and I will say, ‘Welcome Home, brothers and sisters!’

      To start your search, just google ‘catechism of the Catholic Church’ for a ‘friendly’ and true Catholic site.

      August 27, 2010 at 11:36 pm |
  5. ICEMAN

    how am i making things up um what did Yeshua said about Traditions of men and THE ONLY REASON THEY WERE CONSIDERED THE FIRST CHURCH IS BECAUSE THEY KILLED EVERY ONE THAT OPPOSED THEM......" YALL WAS TAKING MONEY AND TELLING PEOPLE MAN CHECK OUT THE CATHOLIC INDULGENCES "IF I SPELLED THEM RIGHT, CHANGED THE WORSHIP DAY FROM SAT TO SUN AS YALL MARK OF AUTHORITY, CAUSE YALL IS ABOVE THE BIBLE..........THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE......GO DEEPER INTO CHRISTANITY BEFORE 325 AD

    August 25, 2010 at 9:19 am |
  6. ICEMAN

    You can say whatever you want but Your people say this.....
    The whole Peter thing is yall crap first pope the bible don't say that....
    WOW JESUS CHRIST REPRESENTATIVE HERE ON EARTH LOL ........HEY YOU NEED NOT RESPOND UNTIL YOU HAVE OPENED UP YOUR HEART CAUSE SOME OF THE THINGS THEY SAID THEY TOOK BACK BUT IT WAS TO LATE....YOU FUNNY TAKING UP FOR THIS EVIL. IF I SAID " HEY I HAVE A GUN POINTED STRAIGHT AT YOUR HEAD BELIEVE IN MY GOD WHAT WOULD YOU DO?" THIS IS YOUR CHURCH NOT CHRIST CHURCH ..... it is very sad that you don't even know your church ugly history and everyone else does.........

    August 25, 2010 at 9:10 am |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Where are the documents for your statements? [books written by anti-Catholics are not authentic documents….]

      Jesus Christ founded the Catholic Church; He made Peter the first Pope. He instituted the Sacraments, with the Church as the dispenser of them as a means by which we receive His graces. If we were not sinners, Jesus Christ would not have founded His Church, with Himself as the Cornerstone; We would not have needed Him or the Church if we were not sinners; but He provided everything His creatures need to live by His Word and to not fall into error.

      August 25, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      1Tim 3:15, "...but in order that you may know, if I am delayed, HOW TO CONDUCT YOURSELF IN THE HOUSE OF GOD, WHICH IS THE CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD, THE PILLAR AND FOUNDATION OF THE TRUTH."

      The mystical body of Christ needs to know how to conduct itself in the house of the Lord.

      August 25, 2010 at 10:18 pm |
  7. ICEMAN

    “The Pope and God are the same, so he has all power in Heaven and earth.” — Pope Pius V, quoted in Barclay,

    August 23, 2010 at 10:50 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Is it your past-time to make up things? Why do you hate the Catholic Church? I know, the Bible says that the world will hate the Church that Jesus Christ founded [because it hates what it does not know.]….

      John 15:18-19
      18
      "If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first.
      19
      If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.

      ……But why does it have to be you who devotes so much time in hating the Church and who tries to get others to do the same? How did this happen to you?

      These following verses show the power was given to the Pope, Peter our first Pope.

      Matthew 16
      15
      He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?"
      16
      Simon Peter said in reply, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God."
      17
      Jesus said to him in reply, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.
      18
      And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.
      19
      I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."
      20
      Then he strictly ordered his disciples to tell no one that he was the Messiah.

      It is all right there in the Bible. You do not have to go to anti-Catholic sites [and should not be constructing such sites] unless you want to confuse and distort the Truth.

      Jesus gave Peter alone the keys; he is the first Pope. Whatever Peter binds on earth shall be bound in Heaven…..it will be accepted 100% in Heaven….whatever is unbound [as in excommunication and lifting of the excommunication] will be accepted 100% in Heaven. The Pope is Jesus Christ’s representative here on earth. Jesus promised the Holy Spirit to guide and guard the disciples and that includes the one with the keys. He promised to never leave and will not let satan prevail against His Church.

      So what is driving you with this passion of hatred for the Church? You were so happy that Martin Luther caused the Church to be split and so now those 30,000+ ecclesial communities keeps splitting and splitting. Is it your desire that everyone be his own pope?

      August 24, 2010 at 10:17 am |
  8. ICEMAN

    Oh and i hope you take this one to heart "THERE IS NO REPRESENTION OF YESUHA ON EARTH, MAYBE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THAT EVERYONE ELSE HAS THE HOLY SPIRIT

    August 23, 2010 at 10:17 pm |
  9. ICEMAN

    HEY YOU KNOW YOUR CATHOLIC CHURCH IS ABOVE THE BIBLE RIGHT?
    catholic record of london, ontario sept1, 1923 . p174
    these people speak Pur,N,T CRAZYNESS!!! and you'll follow them every step of the way.............

    August 23, 2010 at 10:16 pm |
  10. ICEMAN

    WHEN YOU LEARN THE TRUTH ABOUT CADILLAC YOU GO TO A USED LAWNMOWER DEALER.."hey these are the readings they put out" LOL FUNNY THESE PEOPLE KILLED MORE PEOPLE THAN ANYOTHER AND SIAD IT WAS ALL BEHIND CHRISTANITY AND YOU CAN'T EVEN SEE IT.......when Martin Luther started the Protestant Reformation the Catholic's started slaughtering them But by the grace of God the Protestant's stayed with it and prevailed
    THIS IS YOUR HISTORY TO SEE WITH YOUR OWN EYES........JESUS TALKED ABOUT THIS .........Who do you love more him or this church? Why you have your eyes closed to the truth.

    August 23, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  11. ICEMAN

    DID YOU READ THE WHOLE ARTICLE OR JUST SOME POINTS.........OPEN YOUR HEART...... AND WHERE DO IT GET THE ARTICLES USE A TIME MACHINE OR GO ACROSS THE WORLD THIS IS WHAT THE INTERNET IS FOR..........I REALLY WISH YOU READ ABOUT THE ANTICHRISTS AND THEN READ ABOUT YOUR HISTORY

    August 23, 2010 at 10:01 pm |
  12. ICEMAN

    @TypeCast according to the Caatholic National, July 1895 their Archbishop may be just a man but their Pope is not. Oh CatholicMom you can read this yourself as a matter of fact i have alot of these saying, and letters by the popes and from the Catholic i bet you never heard. Your going to have to open up your heart to understand it "hope you do".

    August 22, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Where do you get all your false info? If you want to spread the Truth, read the ‘Catechism of the Catholic Church’, it is easy to find on line!

      The Pope is the Vicar of Christ. Which means he is the representative of Christ and NOT GOD. It looks like the twisting and distorting of Truth is alive and pushing forth today as always. Satan and his comrades never sleep….

      When you want to learn the truth about a Cadillac do you go to a used lawnmower dealer?

      August 23, 2010 at 10:14 am |
  13. Bob Goldson

    A majority does not make something right! Think about seperate but equal education, or segregation there was a time when there was a majority on each. CNN would be better serve the public by better bringing out the the correct side instead of simply the majority

    August 22, 2010 at 9:54 am |
  14. One Whose Name Means Beloved of God

    "The hot-heads on either side must not dominate"

    Now this is a statement I can get behind. The unspoken moderate majority must weigh in if only to show how small the feuding groups are.

    August 22, 2010 at 9:12 am |
  15. Alvin D

    @Reality

    Good one

    Religion cannot win the true fight.

    August 22, 2010 at 2:08 am |
  16. Reality

    Mark,

    Considering the frauds of Christianity especially the Catholic version, the archbishop should not even have a job. Ditto for all the other frauds at the ecu-me-nical table talking about the possible mosque of h-orror remembered.

    August 22, 2010 at 12:43 am |
  17. Mark from Middle River

    Reality. Tell us how many nights of sleep do you lose when you see interfaith types of events happening ? 🙂

    If they offered the arch bishop a place at the table for tryng to work this issue of the mosque then it is an honor.

    August 21, 2010 at 8:21 pm |
    • Reality

      Mark,

      Considering the frauds of Christianity especially the Catholic version, the archbishop should not even have a job. Ditto for all the other frauds at the ecumenical table talking about the possible mosque of horror remembered.

      August 22, 2010 at 12:42 am |
  18. Reality

    A permanent solution:

    Recognizing the flaws, follies and frauds in the foundations of Islam, Judaism and Christianity by the "bowers", "kneelers" and "pew peasants" will quickly converge these religions into some simple rules of life. No clerics, monks, evangelicals, imams, rabbis, professors of religion and priests needed or desired. Ditto for their houses and classes of "worthless worship". It will be called the great "Pink Slipping" of religion and its leaders.

    August 21, 2010 at 12:32 am |
    • CatholicMom

      Reallity,

      For Heavens Sake! Could you rearrange those words another way or something….otherwise each time we see it from comment to comment we are just going to say…read that one already….really!

      August 23, 2010 at 8:32 am |
    • JawOpen

      @Reality

      You know it must be getting super-old if CatholicMom complains!

      August 23, 2010 at 8:56 am |
    • Jeb G

      @Reality

      CatholicMom is right, you know. If SHE's against it, it must be wrong.

      And that "pink slipping" thing is just incredibly GROSS! Ugh! Can't you think of any better jjokes than THAT?

      August 23, 2010 at 10:38 am |
  19. TypeCast

    What I am seeing is that the last paragraph points towards the real problem: people without a solution wanting to "get involved" when all they can bring to the discussion is a desire to see civility and cooperation guide the problem-solving.
    I'm not saying there's anything wrong with civility and cooperation being used to keep things calm, I'm saying that this Archbishop is not an actual party with anything at stake in this issue.
    He is, therefore, not necessarily qualified to be involved in any problem-solving capacity.

    If he would like to chat or discuss his views informally, he could always visit this blog to do so. Invitations are not needed here and many people would like to hear what his responses would be in an informal discussion blog like this one.

    August 21, 2010 at 12:13 am |
    • peace2all

      @TypeCast

      I understand your point..... I think, as I read the article, he was 1) 'asked to get involved' 2) We don't know that 'all he can bring to the table is civility and cooperation.' As a matter of fact, he made a comment about framing the discussion in the article regarding his opinion.
      3) Sometimes someone outside of the ...'having to have something at stake mentality' can see and hear things in a different way, and help keep calm and cool heads and 'see out of the box'.....

      ***Without calm and cool heads.... civility and cooperation as a frame of negotiation....most likely, nothing will get resolved.

      So, with that said..... I hope that this man does help bring about a win-win mutually beneficial solution/s.

      Peace to you....

      August 21, 2010 at 1:50 am |
    • TypeCast

      @peace2all

      I am all for real, workable and sensible solutions.
      I just question the likelyhood that an "Archbishop" would be able to come up with one simply because he is an "Archbishop". Perhaps he is well known in diplomatic circles. I really have no idea.
      Maybe his insightfulness, or lack of it, is well-known. The article is not an in-depth one, to say the least.
      His being an Archbishop-level beauracrat in a religious organization does not fill me with confidence. Perhaps I should have not been so long-winded about it. Sorry.

      August 21, 2010 at 2:58 am |
    • peace2all

      @TypeCast

      No worries here.... we are all just posting our opinions and thoughts. I truly get what your saying..... I thought the same thing, and.... I am hoping since apparently he is going to be part of the negotiations that he will offer something, 'along with' the others that will be there. It is not just on his shoulders.

      Peace to you.....

      August 21, 2010 at 4:19 am |
    • CatholicMom

      Typecast,
      If you were invited would you have turned it down?
      Evidently someone has heard the Archbishop speak on a number of topics as I have and realize he can make comments in a most joyous manner; he appears to be a very happy person, thoughtful and considerate of others, and I would certainly love to be a fly on the wall of the room when they start their meetings.

      August 21, 2010 at 10:48 am |
    • peace2all

      @CatholicMom

      Hey there CM.......See bet you never thought you would find me defending someone from the RCC... 🙂

      Hope that you are doing well.....

      Peace to you.....

      August 21, 2010 at 11:26 am |
    • TypeCast

      @CatholicMom

      I would have turned it down. It is clear you would love to go, though. Don't bother painting your Archbishop as a saint. He is only a man.

      August 21, 2010 at 11:40 am |
    • CatholicMom

      TypeCast,

      Don’t worry; I know we are all called to be saints but it isn’t our job to judge ourselves or anyone else for that matter, as to whether we or they are a saint or not. [Even if we think they have a really good chance at being one….]

      August 22, 2010 at 11:37 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Peace2all
      ,
      Miracles happen all the time!

      But your heart was never really hard, was it?

      August 23, 2010 at 8:28 am |
  20. peace2all

    I think, in my opinion, the last paragraph quoted by Mr. Dolan is on point.

    Peace....

    August 20, 2010 at 8:02 pm |
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