By Robert Spencer via Jihad Watch and Catholic News Service

What killed the world’s conscience and rendered it indifferent to the plight of Christians in the Middle East? Well, when it comes to Cardinal Bechara Rai’s brother bishops in the West, it was the desire for a fruitless and self-defeating “dialogue” with Muslims that gave the appearance of genuine interfaith harmony, albeit without a scintilla of reality.

Not only did Western bishops waste their time having coffee with imams and being subjected to slyly couched dawah, but in the service of this useless exercise, they ruthlessly suppressed any genuine discussion of the persecution of Middle Eastern Christians, and the real causes of that persecution.

This notorious quote from Robert McManus, Roman Catholic Bishop of Worcester, Massachusetts, February 8, 2013, sums it up: “Talk about extreme, militant Islamists and the atrocities that they have perpetrated globally might undercut the positive achievements that we Catholics have attained in our inter-religious dialogue with devout Muslims.” But McManus, except in the sense that he was foolish enough to state baldly and explicitly that he would not allow discussion of Christian persecution because it might harm the dialogue, was not singular in this. His statement was an expression of the U.S. bishops’ party line — one that is fostering ignorance and complacency about the jihad threat among Catholics and other Christians in the West, and ensuring that the future of the Church in the West will resemble the present day of the Church in the Middle East.

“In Syria, Maronite patriarch denounces ‘death of the world’s conscience,’” Catholic News Service, June 8, 2015:

DAMASCUS, Syria (CNS) — Lebanon’s Maronite Catholic patriarch, visiting war-torn Syria, condemned “the death of the world’s conscience” in its response to the violence in the Middle East.

In a homily June 7 at the Maronite Cathedral of St. Anthony in Damascus, Cardinal Bechara Rai also issued a call for peace, “for stopping the war, for political solutions and for the honored return” of the 12 million Syrians who have been uprooted by the country’s four-year civil war.

“We condemn injustice, the death of the world’s conscience and all those who provide arms and money for sabotage, destruction, killing and displacement,” Cardinal Rai said.

Following Mass, the patriarch inaugurated a new Maronite social center. His pastoral visit to the Syrian capital also included attending the inauguration of the Greek Orthodox patriarchate and participating in the annual meeting June 8 of the Catholic and Orthodox Eastern patriarchs.

The religious leaders chose to meet this year in Damascus instead of Lebanon to reassure Middle East Christians troubled by war and displacement.

“We will reflect together, we unite in thought, word and deed, bringing together the concern of our people in Syria and Iraq as well as in various countries of the Middle East … in the hope that this Way of the Cross is followed by the Resurrection,” Cardinal Rai said of the patriarchs’ meeting.

“We carry the cause of all Christians, people of Syria, Iraq, Palestine and Yemen and any country that suffers,” the cardinal said.

The dhimmi cardinal appears to have punctiliously omitted Israel. The jihad against the Jews doesn’t count.

“We, the five Eastern patriarchs, are here to pray for peace. We pray for peace in Syria and the region; we pray for the dead conscience of the international community. We pray for a peaceful resolution of the crisis in Syria, and that Syrians — Christians and Muslims — remain attached to their land, and for the return to their homes in dignity, of those that the war displaced.”

Cardinal Rai also urged the faithful to persevere and hold on to hope, despite numerous atrocities.

“Despite proponents of war, those who fund (it) and mercenaries who make a trade and profit, I am convinced that this wave of violence is fleeting. We are invited to hold on. Many have shed their blood, many were martyred but their blood was not shed in vain. Many also have been forced to flee,” he said.