Updated: Mar 24, 2021
I have muslims in my family. Since millions of Poles have immigrated from Poland to other, particularly European Union countries, members of my family have intermarried with Muslims. There has been great turmoil in my family because of this. Members of my family who are university educated and consider themselves sophisticated, modern, and practicing Catholic Christian people have rejected even their own children because they married someone of the Muslim faith or someone of a different skin color. The Bible says all people are made in image and likeness of God.
My grandma, who has no formal education; never went to any university; when she was confronted with the news about having Muslims join our family responded classically as only my Babcia can do by saying: "I don't know much about Muslims but I do know that there is only ONE GOD and GOD LOVES US ALL.
Do you need a university education for this knowledge? No! You just need to be human and recognize the same humanity that is present in you as being present in everyone else: no matter their creed, race, origin, language, or way of life. I truly believe we need to get away from this idea that we need to become spiritual beings because God already breathed into us His being which has made all of us spiritual just by being alive but what we lack is humanity! We, spiritual beings, need to become HUMAN BEINGS. Not spiritual beings but human beings like my grandma! This is what my grandmother taught me and continues to teach me! My grandmother who saw her neighbors hide in attics and cellars and forests just because they were Jewish; my grandmother who saw neighbors herded off like animals to Aushwitz to be gassed just because they were Jewish or different by racist Nazis who occupied Poland. She knows because she lived through the inhumanity we are capable of as spiritual beings that haven't yet become human.
And so I ask myself which university did she learn to recognize the humanity of others at? Where did she learn to become a true human being made in the image and likeness of Almighty God that sees the same image and likeness of God in all people? Answer: the university of our Lord Jesus Christ who said whatsoever you do to others you do to me; the "others" is all others not just those who think like me, look like me, or worship like me.
Father Adam Kotas