Various media reports indicate that the Vatican has responded favorably to an open letter to the Pope and the Archbishop of Canterbury warning of the dangers to world peace in the absence of peace between Muslims and Christians. As an earlier post has discussed, the signatories to the letter included a large number of Muslim Brotherhood leaders around the world. According to the reports:
The top Vatican official in charge of relations with Islam yesterday welcomed an unprecedented call from 138 Muslim scholars for peace and understanding between their religions. Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran told Vatican Radio he found the letter, released on Thursday, “very interesting”, in part because it was signed by both Shiite and Sunni Muslims and made numerous references to the Old and New Testaments. The letter, addressed to Pope Benedict XVI and other prominent Christian leaders, said finding common ground between the faiths had to go beyond polite dialogue because “the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake”. Tauran, who heads the Vatican’s department for inter-religious dialogue, said he welcomed the fact that the letter was “not polemical” and called for a spiritual approach to dialogue.
Only time will tell if this is the beginning of an improved relationship between the Vatican and the Muslim Brotherhood. As previous posts have noted, groups associated with the Muslim Brotherhood had been meeting annually with officials of the Catholic Church but the relationship has deteriorated sharply under the reign of the current Pope.