Pope Baptizes Noted Muslim-Born Journalist At Easter Services

Muslim-born journalist Magdi Allam has received death threats and lives with police protection.

Pope Benedict XVI baptises journalist Magdi Allam (R) as he celebrates a Easter Vigil mass in Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican March 22, 2008. Pope Benedict led the world’s Catholics into Easter on Saturday at a Vatican service where he baptised Allam, a Muslim-born convert who is one of Italy’s most famous and controversial journalists. (Dario Pignatelli/Reuters)

Egyptian journalist Magdi Allam a strong supporter of Israel and critic of radical Islam was baptized by the Pope today in St Peter’s Basilica.
Reuters reported:

Pope Benedict led the world’s Catholics into Easter on Saturday at a Vatican service where he baptized a Muslim-born convert who is one of Italy’s most famous and controversial journalists.

…In his sermon, Benedict wove a connection between the resurrection of Christ and the sacrament of baptism, the initiation rite of Christianity.

“…from the abyss of death he was able to rise to life. Now he raises us from death to true life. This is exactly what happens in baptism,” the pope said.

The pope traditionally baptizes newborns on January 1 and adult converts to Catholicism on Easter eve.

One of the seven adults he baptized on Saturday night was Magdi Allam, 55, an Egyptian-born journalist who, as deputy director of the leading newspaper Corriere della Sera, is one of Italy’s best-known intellectuals.

Allam, a fierce critic of Islamic extremism and a strong supporter of Israel, is protected by a police escort because of threats he has received.

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