Friction between various religious denominations is not new, but an incident that occurred between Armenian and Greek monks at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem has drawn the attention of many bloggers to such rivalry. Ben Witherington says that such behavior is a disgrace.
There are few places that better demonstrate both the diversity and the divided character of Christianity than the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. So divided are we, that in order for anything to go on in that Church which likely stands over the spot where Jesus was crucified, the keys to the front door have been held by a Muslim family for centuries, because of course the Christians who have staked out turf in this building couldn't decide who should have the keys! […]
Notice that Christians couldn't settle matters themselves so the Israeli riot police had to come in and break things up— a total disgrace. I wish I could say that real Christians don't behave this way, but since I have seen it with my own eyes in my own church, sadly I am unable to say this. It is too easy to write this off as non-born again folks behaving badly.
Father forgive us, for we know not what we do, nor how terrible our witness to a watching world is.
Opinion of a Minion is also amazed.
The video of it is almost beyond belief. It looks like rival football fans having a tussle but it’s the monks fighting over who gets to be in the church. If Armenians are using it for this Feast, the Greeks have to stay out of it. But the Greeks wanted to keep a guardian in the building, specifically in the area considered to be the tomb of Jesus. Armenians had a bit of a problem with that, and whammo slammo.
It’s worse than a divorce. […]
Contemporary Orthodoxy is particularly upset.
The sort of behavior exhibited by our angelic order is quite possibly the most disgusting display of lack of self control possible. It also seems to indicate a lack of maturity. Our Christian charity requires that we are at the very least tolerant of other denominations. […] A more appropriate way to take care of the situation would be to wait until they are finished and then appeal to the higher authorities as to what would be a more acceptable course of action in the future.
Chaldean Thoughts is also distressed by the brawl.
It's very sad for this to happen at one of the holiest places of Christianity. It's worse to know monks started this brawl.
Therion posts photographs of the fight and uses the occasion to attack Christianity.
Jesus is alleged to have taught his followers to “turn the other cheek” when provoked. But when it comes to representatives of his earthly church – fugetabout it!
This brawl is by no means an isolated occurrence. Six Christian sects share control of the ancient church. They frequently hurl abuse and engage in punch-ups that get so out-of-hand the Israeli police are forced to intervene.
What could be more ironical than Christians beating each other up on the alleged burial site of the ‘Prince of Peace.’ Just one more example of Christian hypocrisy, that gives the lie to everything they claim to stand for.
Friggin Loon is not surprised at all.
Nothing says religion better than a good brawl!
Unzipped posts a video.