Sunday, May 24, 2009

Catholic Allah

On the other hand you may have seen the story on the BBC news site today about a court case in Malaysia regarding the use of `Allah` for God by the Catholic Church in that country. Muslims are bringing a case as they say that it is their word for God and can`t be used by anyone else. The problem is that it is the national word for `God`. It will be interesting to see how the case goes. Nice to see the preface being sung in the OF.



Visitors to Malta will know that in Maltese `Allah` is also the word for God and it did strike me as unusual when hearing that name used during Mass in the cathedral.

14 comments:

Ottaviani said...

The problem can be solved easily: if the "religion of peace" is going to cause more problems, revert back to having the mass in Latin!

Miles Mariae said...

I think this is a very silly issue from whatever way you look at it.

Anyway who has read basic latin literature such as the Aeneid sees Jupiter referred to as "Deus".

When we say prayers in latin we use the word "Deus" but it is a very different Deus indeed.

Seeker said...

I assume this is an appeal against an earlier decision that went in favour of the Church? Hopefully the original decision will be upheld.

Seeker said...

Father, on my browser (Firefox 2) the embedding of that video seems to have upset the way the following posts are displayed.

NC Sue said...

I am not steeped in anti-Muslim bias - we had a Muslim family stay with us for several months while their son received medical treatment and learned much from them. But to use the word "Allah" in lieu of "God"? That would have offended our houseguests and frankly bothers me as well. The word "Allah" refers to the deity of Islam. While I respect their right to worship as they please, I cannot in conscience say I worship Allah.

FrankE said...

Seeker - the same here with Firefox 3.0.10. The video would appear to be too 'wide' and causes the side bars (Blogroll, links etc) to appear at the bottom of the posts.

Fr Michael Brown said...

Seeker and Frank, I`m sorry about your Firefox viewer problems. It`s the first time I`ve embedded a BBC video. I didn`t know it was possible until I discovered the international version of the site. I`ll have a look at it on Firefox myself.

gemoftheocean said...

I'm with the headhackers on this one. They can have "Allah."

;-D

PeterHWright said...

Ottaviani is, of course, absolutely right.

Let us stick to "Deus". There's no ambiguity with Latin.

Fr Michael Brown said...

Given that the rest of the Mass is in English it does seem just that little bit provocative to use `Allah` and claim it is because it is the only word in the native language for God.

However I don`t know anything more about the situation other than what the BBC says.

Ottaviani said...

Exactly Peter! The word "Deus" has a far more majestic ring than the word "Allah" anyway.

Fr Lawrence said...

Dear Fr Brown,
Allah is the Arabic word for God. It is used all the time by Palestinain Christians - they celebrate Mass in Arabic. It was very strange at first when I attended Mass in Arabic in Jerusalem and heard all these references to Allah. There is no problem with the muslims over there. The Christians and muslims in the Holy Land speak Arabic and Allah is the Arabic word for God. Is Arabic the native language of Malaysia?

Joanna Samana said...

Well, malay language is main language since majority malays/bumiputera Muslim speak it daily, and also bumiputera Christian where the population of us Catholics about 400 thousands also using malay language. Since Christianity reached to us the minority Catholics, be it urban or remote villages/country side,we have malay mass in church where the word Allah=God have been used...

Joanna Samana said...

Dear Fr, malay language is official language in Malaysia since majority the Muslim bumiputera are speaking in it daily. Well, as for me a minority catholic in Malaysia, there are about 400 thousands of us Catholics in sarawak and sabah where most of us catholic bumiputera also the minority used malay language in our Sunday masses in churches and cathedrals, songs, and bible... where most Allah words been widely use which also means God for us. Christianity came way before our independence time, wherethe missionary out reached to our older generations using malay, introduce Allah bapa, anak, dan roh kudus which also means God the Father, Son, and Holy spirit...