Pave the Way Foundation (PTWF) has identified and brought to light an original document from the Prophet Muhammad, indicating that Muslims must protect the “people of the book” (Jews and Christians) and their churches until the end of time. This covenant of protection was given to the monks of the St. Catherine monastery in Egypt, in 628 CE. The original, which remains in the monastery, is imprinted with the hand of the Prophet Muhammad himself.
Pave the Way Foundation works to identify and eliminate non-theological obstacles between the faiths throughout the world. This covenant of protection of the Jeews and Christians was discovered through the foundation’s work to encourage Islamic support for re-opening the Greek Orthodox Halki Seminary in Turkey, closed since 1971.
Recently, PTWF issued five letters to the Turkish government, signed by a group of international Muslim leaders, requesting that the seminary be re-opened. The letters cited the fact that this covenant instructs the followers of Muhammad to protect the people of the book and not to interfere with the houses of their religion. The document serves as religious basis for the request to re-open the Halki seminary.
The covenant is translated as:
“This is a message from Muhammad ibn Abdullah, as a covenant to those who adopt Christianity, near and far, we are with them.