Via Pajamas Media
After the recent story about Islam overtaking Catholicism as the world's largest religion, this story, Muslims Leaving Islam in Droves comes as an encouraging surprise. Apparently prominent Muslim journalist Magdi Allam's conversion to Catholicism (highlighted by his very public baptism by Pope Benedict) is not an aberration, but a trend.
Interviewed by al-Jazeera in 2006, Ahmad al Qataani, leader of the Companions Lighthouse for the Science of Islamic Law in Libya, explains the decline:
Islam used to represent … Africa’s main religion and there were 30 African languages that used to be written in Arabic script. The number of Muslims in Africa has diminished to 316 million, half of whom are Arabs in North Africa. So in the section of Africa that we are talking about, the non-Arab section, the number of Muslims does not exceed 150 million people. When we realize that the entire population of Africa is one billion people, we see that the number of Muslims has diminished greatly from what it was in the beginning of the last century.
On the other hand, the number of Catholics has increased from one million in 1902 to 329 million 882 thousand (329,882,000). Let us round off that number to 330 million in the year 2000.
As to how that happened, well there are now 1.5 million churches whose congregations account for 46 million people. In every hour, 667 Muslims convert to Christianity. Everyday, 16,000 Muslims convert to Christianity. Every year, 6 million Muslims convert to Christianity. These numbers are very large indeed.
Watching the horrors that seem to flourish wherever Islam takes root it has always struck me as unfathomable why so many remain faithful to it, let alone why others would convert. Allam's comments are much more in line with the kind of reaction a rational mind would have. He says he,
“has been freed from the obscurantism of an ideology that legitimizes lies and deception, violent death that leads to homicide and suicide, blind submission to tyranny, permitting me to join the authentic religion of Truth, Life, and Liberty. … I realize what I am going up against but I will confront my fate with my head high, with my back straight, and the interior strength of one who is certain about his faith.”
Africa is not the only place experiencing this phenomenon:
In Iran as many as 1 million people have surreptitiously converted to Evangelical Christianity in the last five years.
Some additional reasons for this:
One Iranian religious scholar believes youth are abandoning Islam because it is identified with the corrupt Iranian government.
Iran being Iran and Islam being Islam of course this is cannot be allowed so,
Now the Iranian Majlis (parliament) is debating the death penalty for conversion.But there is reason to hope that this won't be enough. So while it seems that much of the West is too weak and morally bankrupt to present a coherent ideological defense to radical Islam, the seeds of the opposition might actually reside within Islam itself.