“Tumbukin Natin” blog: Catholic apologist Cenon Bibe answers questions from Balik Islam
As I thought before, the debate of the Catholic apologist Cenon Bibe and the members of Balik Islam will never push through. But Cenon has been receiving text messages on his mobile phone from those who claim to be members of the Balik Islam (Return to Islam) movement, a movement of former Christians who became Muslims. (He also receives questions from Protestants.) These questions he posts in his blog, “Tumbukin Natin” in the hope of converting the Balik Islam members back to Christianity. So in this sense, he is starting the Balik-Kristiyano movement. This is apt, since Christianity (AD 33) came first before Islam (AD 632), and many countries in Asia and Northern Africa–the provinces of the Old Roman Empire–were formerly Christian before the Islamic conquest. The only problem, though, is that his blog is in Filipino. I hope he adds a Google translation widget, so that his blog would be read by more people all over the world.
Cenon has a fancy for sprinkling his writing with words in all caps. Some people may take offense at this, for all caps means shouting. Here, for example, is his mission statement, which I translated into English, with the words in all caps intact:
CATHOLICS and the CATHOLIC FAITH are being ATTACKED. The ATTACKS are usually STRONG and FEROCIOUS. The SAD thing is that their CRITICISMS are ALL WRONG.
We launch this blog to help EXPLAIN CATHOLIC TEACHINGS and to CORRECT the WRONG THINGS said AGAINST CATHOLICISM.
You can HELP in DEFENDING THE TRUTH and in SPREADING the CORRECT TEACHING by INTRODUCING this BLOG to people you KNOW.
PRAISE be the LORD! PRAISE be JESUS CHRIST!
Here is a sample of questions or thesis statements from Balik Islam that he answered:
- The bible has been corrupted because there are other scriptures that are not found in the bible such as Gospel of Barnabas. [here]
- Is the Bible confirmed by the Koran? [here]
- Jesus Christ is uncircumcised. [here]
Cenon is the only Catholic apologist studying Islam. May he walk in the footsteps of St. Francis of Assisi, the man of peace who went to the Sultan in Egypt to try to convert him. Here is a Wikipedia entry:
In 1219 Francis left, together with a few companions, on a pilgrimage of non-violence to Egypt. Crossing the lines between the sultan and the Crusaders in Damietta, he was received by the sultan Melek-el-Kamel. Francis challenged the Muslim scholars to a test of true religion by fire; but they retreated. When Francis proposed to enter the fire first, under the condition that if he left the fire unharmed, the sultan would have to recognize Christ as the true God, the sultan was so impressed that he allowed Francis to preach to his subjects. Though Francis did not succeed in converting the sultan, the last words of the sultan to Francis of Assisi were, according to Jacques de Vitry, bishop of Acre, in his book “Historia occidentalis, De Ordine et praedicatione Fratrum Minorum (1221)” : “Pray for me that God may deign to reveal to me that law and faith which is most pleasing to him.”.
St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us.