Pope Francis recently appointed a pro-Islam bishop to serve as bishop over the influential French city of Marseille on the Mediterranean coast. Bishop Jean-Marc Aveline is an adherent to “Chrislam,” the belief that Muslims and Christians worship the same God and that the two religions can seamlessly merge into one. Bishop Aveline hopes to achieve a merging with Islam through Christian-Islamic Dialogue.
The appointment of Aveline over Marseille is a strategic one for Francis, as the city is a haven for Muslim migrants, particularly those from North Africa and Sub-Sahara Africa.
Aveline’s commitment to Chrislam is so great that he was named the president of the Council for Interreligious Relations of the French Bishops’ Conference in 2017.
According to other Catholic writers, Aveline founded the Institut de sciences et théologie des religions (Institute of sciences and theology of religions), and it supports, “a relativistic view of religions, putting the Christian faith and Islam on the “same plane.”
Lifesite News, a Romanist publication, highlighted an interesting caveat to this whole story. It seems that Aveline and his cohort of “Christian-Islamicists” are actually using Lectio Divina (which American evangelical polemicists have warned is an unbiblical mystical practice for much time) to accomplish this task of merging the two faiths.
Aveline has chosen to honor Fr. Christian de Chergé, who aplaced the Koran in the chapel of his monastery and used it for the lectio divina. Lectio Divina is the practice of using a sacred text to contemplate or meditate in prayer, trying to receive revelation from God directly (prayer is meant to speak to God, not for God to speak to us).
As Lifesite Says…
But this sort of exercise is at the heart of modernist “Islamo-Christian dialogue,” as it is officially practiced in France’s mainstream Catholic bodies, which, instead of promoting friendship and understanding between Catholics and Muslims in view of facilitating conversions to the true Faith, place their efforts in illusory “sharing” between the Islamic and the Catholic faith as such, where theological discussions are presented as searching the truths and convergences in both, not taking into account their radical incompatibility.
Aveline’s muse, Fr. Christian Salenson, said, “through personal experience [Christian de Cherg’e] knew that Islam is a way that can accompany men and women on the path to God.”
La Croix, a newspaper for the French church, said that Jean-Marc Aveline was a “faithful craftsman of interreligious dialogue.” Aveline meets with the city’s Imam’s every six weeks.
But don’t worry; on top of being a Christian Islamicist, Aveline also seems to share the Marxist sentiments of Francis, noting, “very strong economical disparities between poor and rich parts of town, which endanger social bonding.”