Skip to comments.Muslim leader says pope is model of what religious leader should be
Posted on 10/08/2013 1:24:33 PM PDT by haffast
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis, like Islam's Sufi mystic theologians and poets, "is trying to do good for the sake of the Good One, motivated by love and compassion," said the president of the Islamic Affairs Council of Maryland.
Mohamad Bashar Arafat, a Syrian who has lived in the United States for more than 20 years, was visiting the Vatican and speaking to groups in Rome in early October as a guest of the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See as part of the U.S. State Department's international speakers program.
In an interview with Catholic News Service, Arafat said he sees Pope Francis acting as all truly religious leaders should: reaching out with respect for the human person and open to dialogue.
Arafat said the pope's love and openness were clear not only in his choice of being named after St. Francis of Assisi, but particularly in his decision in July to visit the Italian island of Lampedusa, praying for migrants lost at sea and calling the world's attention to the need for immigration reform, and in calling on people around the world to fast and pray for peace in Syria in early September when a military strike seemed imminent.
"From my perspective, Pope Francis is really doing a wonderful job in terms of outreach, in terms of contributing to world peace, in terms of contributing to stopping wars and conflicts, praying for better understanding," Arafat said. "This was the message of St. Francis Assisi and this is the message of Ibn Arabi, the great Muslim scholar and theologian and poet, and this is the spirit of all the Muslim saints and Sufis around the world."
(Excerpt) Read more at catholicnews.com ...
Hello! Well said.
Pope Francis, like Islam's Sufi mystic theologians and poets, "is trying to do good for the sake of the Good One, motivated by love and compassion," said the president of the Islamic Affairs Council of Maryland. Mohamad Bashar Arafat, a Syrian who has lived in the United States for more than 20 years, was visiting the Vatican and speaking to groups in Rome in early October as a guest of the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See as part of the U.S. State Department's international speakers program.
Imam Mohamad Bashar Arafat
Founder, Civilizations Exchange & Cooperation Foundation
Born and raised in Damascus, Syria, Imam Arafat attended Damascus University and graduated with a degree in Islamic Studies and Arabic Language in 1987 and a degree in Islamic Law in 1988. From 1975 to 1989 under the guidance and mentorship of the late Grand Mufti of Syria, Sheikh Ahmad Kuftaro, he studied Quranic interpretation, wisdom of the “Shari’ah” and the Islamic spiritual teachings. From 1989 to 1997, he accompanied the Grand Mufti during most of his international programs and conferences.
He served as Imam in Damascus from 1981 to 1989 and was then invited to the United States to lecture in various Islamic Centers. He was Imam of the Islamic Society of Baltimore, Maryland from 1989 to 1993, founded An-Nur Institute for Islamic Studies and Arabic Language in Baltimore in 1993, co-founded An-Nur Mosque in Carney, Maryland and was the Imam from 1995 to 1997. Currently he is President of the Islamic Affairs Council of Maryland, based in Baltimore.
He taught courses on Islamic Studies at the Ecumenical Institute of Theology at St. Mary’s Seminary & University, the University of Maryland in Baltimore County (UMBC), Johns Hopkins University, Goucher College, the Renaissance Institute, as well as Comparative Religions at Potomac College in Washington, DC. Currently he is teaching at Notre Dame of Maryland University.
He served as Campus Imam at Johns Hopkins University from 1993 to October 2003, Adjunct Chaplain at Johns Hopkins Hospital from 2000 to October 2003, and Muslim Chaplain for Baltimore City Police Department from 1998 to 2006.
Since moving to Baltimore in 1989, he has been heavily involved with interfaith work, both nationally and internationally, promoting better understanding between Muslims and other Faith Traditions. Among the recent seminars and conferences he has participated in are:
“Schools of the Future: Sailing the Winds of Change”, National Association of Independent Schools in Chicago, USA
“Islam & Civil Society”, The Witherspoon Institute, Princeton University in New Jersey, USA
“Human Rights in Judaism, Christianity and Islam”, Clergy Beyond Borders in Washington, DC, USA
“Imam & the Pastor” and “Mary in the Qur’an”, Parliament of World Religions in Melbourne, Australia
“Qur’an Conference: Understanding Scientific Developments in the Light of Holy Qur’an” and “Muslims and Education: Challenges and Opportunities”, in New Delhi, India
“Diaspora Forum”, U.S. Department of State in Washington D.C.
Imam Arafat is the Founder and President of Civilizations Exchange and Cooperation Foundation (CECF), which functions as an umbrella to bring people together for exchanges aimed at creating a better world that promotes peace and cooperation.
Currently CECF provides religious & cultural training, consultation, and orientation services for the international exchange students and staff of the U.S. Department of State’s sponsored Youth Exchange Study Program, “YES Program” in the USA. Imam Arafat is the convener of three annual youth leadership and interfaith conferences, “Better Understanding for a Better World” (BUBW) in Orlando, San Diego, and Baltimore.
As of January 2005, Imam Arafat began conducting programs on “Islam in America” through the International Speakers Program of The United States Department of States in Chad, Niger, Mauritania, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Kenya, Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Maldives, Spain, Austria, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Iceland, Belgium and India.
“Ahmed Muhammad Amin Kuftaro (December 1915 September 1, 2004) was the Grand Mufti of Syria, the highest Sunni Muslim religious official in Syria.”
Get that smelly islamist out of here!
Tony Blair!! He’s everywhere, he’s everywhere!!
Another “love the sinner, but hate the sin” and the sinner’s ungodly religion.
That’s good. Now that they are listening ..... PF should declare that Christian churches are open for everyone who wants to hear the wonderful news about Jesus of Nazareth who was born, performed miracles, taught us how to love God and each other, how to repent for our sins, and then took upon his shoulders the weight of our transgressions and offered himself up as a sacrifice to God. How fortunate we are to have such a Redeemer!
As of January 2005, Imam Arafat began conducting programs on Islam in America through the International Speakers Program of The United States Department of States in Chad, Niger, Mauritania, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Kenya, Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Maldives, Spain, Austria, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Iceland, Belgium and India.
Sounds like a lot of geography for this U.S. State Department asset.
Suprising, again, given the fact that major schools of Salafists and Wahhabis and so on emphatically don't even consider them to be within the Dar al-Islam. A Sufi is not what you'd naturally expect to be the diplomatic selectman to be OK with everybody.
The Quran, Islam’s holy book, does not teach Muslims to espouse the attitude “I am the only one who is right and all of you are wrong,” he said, nor does it insist that every nation must be governed by Shariah, Islam law...Tell that to the people in the U.K. Back in August 16, 2013.A federal judge Thursday prohibited Oklahoma officials from certifying the results of a 2010 statewide election that approved a constitutional amendment to prohibit state courts from considering international or Islamic law when deciding cases.U.S. District Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange permanently enjoined the State Election Board and its secretary, Paul Ziriax, from certifying results of the vote in which State Question 755 was approved by Oklahoma voters. The measure was passed with 70 percent of the vote on Nov. 2, 2010.
Muneer Awad, former executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Oklahoma, challenged the constitutional amendment in a lawsuit that claimed it would stigmatize his religion and would invalidate his will, which he said is partially based on Islamic Law, also known as Sharia Law.CAIR’s current executive director, Adam Soltani, said the decision reinforces a ruling Miles-LaGrange almost three years ago in which she approved a temporary restraining order barring certification of the election’s results. That decision was later upheld by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.
We are safe to practice our faith without being demonized, Soltani said. It’s also a victory for our Constitution that guarantees and protects freedom of religion.
Reread post #25.
Connect these dots:
“Imam” ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imam )
With a lot of “respect”:
Imam Arafat: respect for religious diversity
Vatican Radio - 2013-10-09 14:06:05
...and most likely he’s Sunni, not Sufi, playing the ecumenical “all paths lead to Allah(God??)” angle, same as PF.......but with a working knowledge of the “wisdom of the Shariah” law.
Encouraged to walk like an Egyptian?:
So,for a one world religion, will it be Canon Law, Shariah Law, God’s Law, or....under Grace following Jesus?
Imam Arafat’s been ready for Christmas....
So, you think he’s a Sunni? That would make sense. It would be more mutually advantageous to the Obamunist State Dept.’s overall project of promoting Sunni Islam around the world.
I think so, but it’s hard for me to tell ‘em apart, and I’m no expert on Islam. Opens up more questions than answers for me as far as to his underlying motives and associations (ie, spiritual, NWO, endtimes, politcal, cultural etc perspectives). Pretty clear he’s concentrating on “educating” the young.
Sorry for the late replies, little time the last few days to feed my FR addiction or vet these guys.