Apr 30, 2013

My Boston Takeaway

Rev. Nell Green
Source: ABP News Blog
These posts are truly difficult to write; partly because if you want to be real then you have to confess some things and partly because events such as occurred last week are not easy to process. I am not sure you ever finish processing them. I try to imagine what it must have been like to be in that crowd enjoying a national event with family and friends only to have it literally ripped apart by explosives. 

Apr 29, 2013

Dispelling Mormon Myths Part 1

By Ramona Siddoway
A couple of months ago an Women’s Interfaith Discussion Group met to discuss common misconceptions people have about other religions. Besides walking away with much more respect for other religions and the amazing women in that group, I think we all agreed that for the most part we don’t know squat about anybody else’s religion. Not really. We tend to lump everyone into large stereotypical groups with not much more than media, hearsay, and Hollywood to back any of our claims.

Apr 22, 2013

Athiests Find a Sunday Morning Connection with Other Non-Believers

By Kimberly Winston
HOUSTON (RNS): Sunday mornings at Houston Oasis  may have the look and feel of a church, but there’s no cross, Bible, hymnal or stained glass depictions of Jesus. There’s also nary a trace of doctrine, dogma or theology. But the 80 or so attendees at this new weekly gathering for nonbelievers come for many of the same reasons that others pack churches in this heavily Christian corner of the Bible Belt — a sense of community and an uplifting message that will help them tackle the challenges of the coming week, and, maybe, the rest of their lives.

Apr 17, 2013

Boston Attack a Test Case for Interfaith Relationship Building

By Saadia Faruqi
Source: Tikkun Daily
The nation is still reeling from shock after Monday’s attack on the Boston Marathon. Gun violence notwithstanding, this is perhaps the first real terrorist attack on US soil after 9/11. Understandably emotions have been running high; no surprise then, that as the events unfolded many people, including the media, jumped on the “Blame the Muslims” bandwagon. The New York Post famously inflated casualty numbers and reported that a Saudi man was apprehended as a suspect by the police. Social media was inundated by predictions of guilt and accusations of violent jihad, at the same time as the Muslim community mobilized to condemn the attacks.

Apr 10, 2013

Muslim Women Don't Need To Be Rescued

By Saadia Faruqi
Source: Tikkun Daily

It seems that controversy over the hijab – the Islamic tradition of covering a woman’s hair and body – will not die down anytime soon. Governments such as France and Germany seem to be dead set against it, while theocracies such as Saudi Arabia go the other extreme by forcing women to cover. But ask the average Muslim woman, and she will probably wonder what the fuss is all about. Since when is dress a political statement, even a weapon? FEMEN – a feminist Ukrainian protest group – seems to think it is, and is up in arms over the hijab, declaring April 4 as International Topless Jihad Day. What FEMEN activists perhaps did not expect was that Muslim women who wear the hijab are a tad possessive about their right to wear it, and don’t take lightly to a declaration of jihad (Arabic for struggle) against it. 

Apr 4, 2013

What Pope Francis Might Mean for Muslim-Christian Relations

By Saadia Faruqi
Source: Tikkun Daily

The news out of the Vatican seems to be getting more and more fascinating every day. An avid researcher of all religions - and especially interested in all things Catholic because of my educational ties with convents - I have been following the abdication of Pope Benedict and the election of Pope Francis, and all that's happened in between these two major events, with great interest. When Benedict resigned, I felt a moment or two of incredulity, because it's practically unheard of. Then I followed the whole voting process, including the betting, with bated breath. And I haven't been disappointed, for Pope Francis is proving to be an absolute gem in so many ways. As I said, fascinating news... even though I'm a Muslim.