One of the incidents I often hear about from sedevacantists and even people who just don’t think Pope John Paul II was a good bishop was the supposed Koran-kissing incident. A few years ago, some Iraqi Muslims were received by the Pope in an audience and at the end, they gave him a gift of a big green book with Arabic writing. The Pope took the book and kissed it. So what are we to make of this?
In his own logical and methodical style, Jimmy Akin examines the incident and asks what it might mean? Do read the whole thing, but I think it all boils down the question: So what? By that I mean, so what is your point in bringing it up?
After all, I have experienced that in most such instances the questioner (I’m not specifically referring to the guy emailing Jimmy) is not really interested in what happened or why, but is using the incident to advance a thesis, usually that the Pope isn’t a real pope, that the Church since Vatican II is not the real church, that all efforts at interreligious dialogue or ecumenism are actually a form of syncretism, and so on.
So while Jimmy’s blog is great because he logically steps through the whole question, I’m afraid there are some people who will not be satisfied because they were not interested in the answer to begin with because they had already made up their minds.
Still, Jimmy’s answer goes in my bookmarks for the next time I have to deal with this very question.