The Accidental Abductee
Archbishop Basile Georges Casmoussa, the “much-loved” 66-year old head of the archdiocese who was kidnapped at gunpoint yesterday by Iraqi insurgents in the crime-filled northern city of Mosul, was released today without the payment of any ransom. Speaking on Vatican Radio, Casmoussa said he’d been treated well by his captors, and that they seemed to regret kidnapping a cleric. “‘As soon as they found out I was a bishop, their attitude changed…I think my abduction was a coincidence.'” Casmoussa didn’t consider his kidnapping as part of a coordinated attack on the Iraqi Christian population. “‘Based on conversations I had with them, it didn’t appear that they wanted to strike at the Church as such.'”

Right-wing missionaries to the extremely powerful (elected or appointed), the Christian group Faith and Action has moved beyond its role of gifting senators and congressmen with stone Ten Commandments tablets and has announced its plans to begin Thursday’s inauguration ceremonies with a prayer of thanksgiving to God for President Bush’s reelection. Said F&A President Rev. Rob Schenck “‘No president is perfect, but George Bush has done more than any recent president to champion what is important to serious Christians of every tradition: The Sanctity of Human Life, the Sanctity of Marriage and the public acknowedgement of God.'” We’re thinking either the phrase “every tradition” or “serious Christians” is looking for a qualifier.