November 28, 2017

Pro ISIS Group Posts 'Beheading' Image of Pope Francis. Vows Terrorism Against Vatican and 'Christmas Blood'

The Vatican

In late 2014, an online book began circulating in jihadist circles entitled, Black Flags from Rome. It discusses the establishment of an Islamic caliphate in Europe with the expressed goal of sacking Rome and destroying the Vatican. Stressing Muslim grievances against the West, including the Crusades, Black Flags from Rome states: "the Islamic State’s secret weapon = secret white converts," and "recruits" sympathetic to their cause "will give intelligence, share weapons and do undercover work for the Muslims to pave the way for the conquest of Rome."

Islamic militants frequently threaten the Pope and symbols of Catholicism. A pro-ISIS media group, the Wafa' Media Foundation, recently told its followers: "The Crusaders' feast is approaching... show them the meaning of terrorism." The message includes a chilling image of smoke rising from Rome with a fighter jet overhead and a jihadist standing next to the sort of makeshift armored vehicle ISIS uses for suicide bombings in Iraq and Syria. A caption reads: "The date is approaching o worshippers of the cross," according to PJ Media, who write:

"The ISIS magazine Rumiyah -- or Rome, reflecting the group's apocalyptic vision and ultimate plans to sack the Vatican, hasn't published a new issue since September. Their early e-book (Black Flags... ) detailing the Rome conquest strategy predicted mob bosses would put up tough resistance: 'There is no doubt that if Muslims want to take over Italy, the Islamic State European fighters will have to ally with other militias to fight the Mafia before the conquest of Rome.'"

Pope Francis and Christianity have been increasingly singled out by ISIS and groups affiliated with it. In August ISIS released a disturbing video predicting violence against the Vatican itself. Fox News reported that the video features: "ISIS militants wrecking decorations in a church, including statues of Jesus, Mary and St. Joseph. 'Remember this, you kuffar, we will be in Rome, we will be in Rome, inshallah,' a supposed terrorist named 'Abu Jindal' says to the camera. Photos of Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI are shown being ripped in half."

The video menacingly blames Christians for today's Islamic terrorism: "After all their efforts, it would be the religion of the cross that would be broken," the narrator says as footage of a church in flames rolls. "The crusader's enmity toward the Muslims only served to embolden a generation of [Islamist] youth." Indeed, Pope Francis has correctly called our current crisis a "Third World War".

Prayer For Persecuted Christians

O God of all the nations, the One God who is and was and always will be, in your providence you willed that your Church be united to the suffering of your Son. Look with mercy on your servants who are persecuted for their faith in you. Grant them perseverance and courage to be worthy imitators of Christ. Bring your wisdom upon leaders of nations to work for peace among all peoples. May your Spirit open conversion for those who contradict your will, that we may live in harmony. Give us the grace to be united in truth, and to always seek your will in our lives. Through Christ our Lord. Amen. Our Lady, Queen of Peace, pray for us.

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