This is certainly a time of tumult in the Muslim faith, as this article in the Daily Beast describes a recent Saturday afternoon prayer session "invaded" by women in one of the most popular mosques in Washington, D.C. to make the point that women should be allowed into mosques to pray along with men. The women "activists" or "invaders" were almost arrested.
The Muslim-Christian Summit organized with officials of the Muslim faith is meeting this week at the Washington National Cathedral. Wonder if these Muslim clerics could explain in plain English for us all, please, why they exclude women from equality in religion and social life.
Today's Sunday Forum at the Washington National Cathedral with Suheil Salman Dawani the Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem, of the Holy Land, of Israel, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon filled us in on the Christian side of the Holy Land and is available to hear and to purchase on DVD from the Cathedral website, www.nationalcathedral.org.
The Rt. Rev. Suheil Salman Dawani
photo:Washington National Cathedral
The Bishop of Jerusalem has launched a number of non-profits, such as hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centers, twelve schools with 7,000 students and summer camps abroad with different faiths.
The Christian community centered in Jerusalem goes back to the days of the Pentecost, the church's birthday, although the number of Christians in the Holy Land has actually decreased significantly to a current number less than 1% of the population. Many Christians raised as such moved abroad for higher education and did not return. At the same time, Muslims in the Holy Land attend Anglican schools in significant numbers for a solid education and to learn good values.
The Very Rev. Sam Lloyd asked how America can be helpful and supportive and engage with Christians in the Holy Land? Here are three suggested ways to get involved:
1) advocate for the peace process
2) support American Friends of Jerusalem and
Cathedral Dean Sam Lloyd emphasized later in his sermon the future depends on peace between Christians and Muslims. We need to seek good in each other. He says reconciliation is a one-on-one personal business. He cited the mothers he met in the Holy Land who wanted to work for peace so the tragedies met by their sons in battle wouldn't happen again.
The Christian-Muslim SummitMarch 1–3, 2010
Washington National Cathedral hosts a summit of Christian and Muslim faith leaders March 1–3, 2010, culminating in a public dialogue the evening of Wednesday, March 3, at 7 pm, in the Cathedral nave.
[Please see the National Cathedral website to] RSVP for the public dialogue now »
This is the first of four interfaith dialogues on reconciliation planned with the following four principals:
- Ayatollah Dr. Seyed Mostafa Mohaghegh Damad, professor of law and chairman, Department of Islamic Studies, the Academy of Sciences of Iran; representing the Shi’a Muslim tradition
- Professor Ahmad El Tayeb, president of Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt; representing the Sunni Muslim tradition
- His Eminence Jean-Louis Cardinal Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, Vatican
- The Right Reverend John Bryson Chane, Episcopal bishop of Washington