Detroit–September 18–The CIOMâ€™s annual unity dinner happened again for the 25th time, this time in a new venue, the Detroit Institute of Arts. Hundreds of Muslims attended, representing the majority of the Southeast Michigan mosques.
A full program welcomed the visitors, with a screening of â€œOn a Wing and a Prayer,â€ tours of Detroitâ€™s art gallery, a childrenâ€™s program, and speeches by many prominent people including the Muslim filmmaker Alex Kronemer, Archbishop Allen A. Vigneron, Dearborn Mayor Jack Oâ€™Reilly, and Craig Fahle of WDET. CIOM speakers included Dr. Muzammil Ahmed, Victor Ghalib Begg, and Dr. Abdalmajid Katranji.
Alex Kronemer spoke on the importance of communicating across boundaries of race and religion, and of the importance of being a positive force in the world while negative forces hold so much sway over the human mind.
Archbishop Vigneron spoke eloquently on the importance of cooperation across religious lines on issues where there is mutual agreement, and he emphasized those areas, namely that God is One, that He created the universe, that He created the human race, giving them reason and freedom, that He spoke to His creatures, teaching them, that all men and women will be held to account. He offered powerful arguments to show that despite popular wisdom to the contrary, faith and religion have always been powerful forces behind scientific inquiry.