Essay About Violent Proselytism in Christianity
By Steven D. Catanach
I have written a paper concerned with the violence by Christians seen throughout history for the sake of conversion. Proselytism is the attempted conversion of another to one’s own religion. Throughout history, Christians have time and time again persecuted and violently harmed others with the hopes of converting them to Christianity. Examples explored throughout my paper include the persecution of pagans and other non-Christians performed by the Roman Empire, the Crusades which killed hundreds of thousands for the sake of Christians taking back the Holy Land, as well as modern day examples of Christians turning to violence to further the reach of Christianity.
In today’s world, so much attention is paid towards Muslim Jihadists and their violent methods in furthering the reach of Islam. This attention is garnered for good reason, but throughout the paper I explore instances in which Christianity has participated in this same type of behavior. A religion with such peaceful teachings and backgrounds has constantly turned to violence throughout their history, and throughout this paper I lay out the reasons why I believe this is due to the need for Christians to proselytize others. Although not able to touch on every aspect of Christian violence due to proselytism, I touch on a number of history’s most pertinent instances. I hope this paper helps bring light to the issue that so many religions have had throughout history: the needless violence brought on by attempts to convert another to one’s own religion.