It is often said that racism is America’s “original sin.” In 2013, we mark 150 years since the Emancipation Proclamation and 50 years since the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King’s momentous “I have a dream” speech at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Yet race remains salient in American public life. This was never more evident than in the impassioned reactions to the shooting of Trayvon Martin in Florida last spring and the acquittal of George Zimmerman. How is religion a force for racial reconciliation? How is religion involved in maintaining racial division? Does 11:00 on Sunday morning remain, as Dr. King lamented in a 1968 sermon at the Washington National Cathedral, “the most segregated hour in America?” As immigration and changing demographics have reshaped the religious landscape, how will Christians relate to their neighbors of other faiths? We will study important stories of shared history, theological similarities and differences, and aspirations for social justice that both Christians and Muslims share as communities of faith. Religious differences provide fertile ground for animosity and misunderstanding. Over the years, both Muslims and Christians have dealt with extremists who distort the character of true belief. Significant, intelligent dialogue and the development of authentic friendships across religious lines are key to deepening Christians’ and Muslims’ faith. Recorded on
Imamr Omar Suleiman reminds us that as Muslims we must speak the truth in the face of injustice and stand up with those who are oppressed and in need. In this particular case he tells us the stories of many individuals who were murdered due to racism, bigotry, etc.
The precious advice that Prophet Muhammad ﷺ gave humanity in his last Sermon (The Sermon of Farewell) shows how much Islam values and appreciates the concepts of social equality, brotherhood, individual liberty and mutual cooperation as a guiding light for humanity fourteen centuries ago. Join us in covering these beautiful principles and discussing how we can apply them to our daily lives.
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