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Terry Jones Denounced by Muslim and Christian Leaders

By Adil James, TMO

Reverends and imams speak at the ICA press conference at 10:30AM Friday April 22, 2011.  At center is Imam Qazwini of the ICA, to his right Imam Elahi and Imam Mardini, respectively.

Dearborn–April 22–The overcast morning of Friday April 22 was one that began with the ominous likelihood of violence.  Despite the religious significance of the day (Easter to Christians) “Pastor” Terry Jones had planned to burn the Qur`an directly in front of the biggest mosque in the United States as an act of provocation.  As the day turned out, however, Jones was prevented through last-minute legal wrangling from going through with what would have been an incendiary act on several levels.  The city of Dearborn feared an outbreak of violence, as evidenced by the police presence at the mosque.

But as the day began, religious leaders from the community did not know the burning would be prevented–they thought that Jones might go through with his plan, and they spoke en masse in the auditorium of the Islamic Center of America, speaking one by one against Jones’ message of hate, bigotry, and intolerant ignorance.

Present were many news channels and outlets–the ICA room chosen for the press meeting teemed with reporters, looking a little bit like the White House briefing room.

The speakers one by one spoke a message of tolerance–and the theme of all their speeches was that Terry Jones is in fact an extremist and his act of burning the Qur`an is rooted in his deep ignorance, and his behavior stands in stark contrast to the behavior and message of Jesus (as).

The symbolism of Jones’ attempt to burn the Qur`an on Good Friday was not lost on the Christian reverends who spoke–all of them expressed their dismay at such an act of hatred being committed on a day which should represent the directly opposite message.

Imam Qazwini of the Islamic Center of America functioned as the moderator of the event, one by one introducing the many speakers who (literally) joined hands to protest Jones’ planned act of hatred.

The mayor of Dearborn, Jack O’Reilly, spoke very fluently about the event, pointing out the need to balance the rights of people against one another–while a man in America has a right to protest, the churches local to ICA  (which have stood where they are for 50 years) also had a right to perform their Good Friday services in peace.  He pointed out Jones’ attempts through internet advertising to bring hundreds if not thousands of people to his planned protest, which contradicted his application for a permit to protest which listed only five or six protesters.

The mayor gave perhaps the strongest Christian argument against Jones’ planned behavior, citing the Pope’s decree that Islam is a valid religion, and that  Catholics should treat their Muslim brothers and sisters with respect.  O’Reilly also cited Bible passages which he said described Jones’ behavior, of inciting fear in people and then asking for money, which Jones had done.

Most of the Christian ministers and reverends who spoke questioned Jones’ title of “pastor,” pointing out the nature of his message as being contrary to the essential teachings of his religion.

One reverend said “Today is Good Friday… the message of today is about love, not exclusive love, but unconditional love.  Love God with all your heart and soul, and love your neighbor as yourself.”
He pointed out that the deeper issue in Jones’ protest is the issue of racism.

Mustapha Turk of IONA said that if Jones had read the Qur`an he would not burn it because the Qur`an has praises of Jesus (as) on almost every page.
One reverend begged the people of Pakistan and Afghanistan not to react with violence to whatever scene might unfold later in the day.

Several of the Christian ministers pointed out the burning of churches during the civil rights struggle as being similar to Jones’ attack on Islam.

Imam Qazwini perhaps put it best when asked whether he had tried to communicate with Jones.

“I met [him] last night at Channel 2 where we were both guests, and I invited him not to protest, but to come inside and have a dialog with Muslim leaders.”

“I don’t think he is sincere, or logical,” said Imam Qazwini.


One comment
  1. salama abdelhady

    May 17, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    Read not Burn

    “Read” was the first word that was revealed from God to His Last messenger: “Mohamed”. The “God’s Order” was: “Read” not “Burn”. Quran’s revelation starts by this order: “Read.” All Muslims in the world are faithfully and wisely fulfilling this order at least five times every day. However, they “Read” Quran and “Read” the signs of God in the universe in every moment. This Book is the Mercy of God that enlightens and Guides their life.

    Surely this Quran guides (to a life) which is most upright (the straightest or the most stable),

    As a miraculous piece of Heavenly source that was revealed in the dawn of human’s civilization, it yields not only aesthetic contentment but provides also the whole philosophic and scientific truth. It is a valuable tool to the lexicographer seeking to the scientist probing for clues concerning the existence of God, to a man seeking the evidence of the Day of Resurrection, to understanding the logic of human’s life, the constitution of good and evil, love and hate, happiness and misery, success and failure, mercy and cruelty, peace and war and all the life’s concepts as ordained by God for the whole mankind, and to the theologian who regards the Quran as the ultimate unchallengeable recourse for all religious knowledge.

    Most of the verses of Quran have scientific logic and are based on modern scientific knowledge. No contradictions or conflicts have been found between Quran and modern sciences. There are many verses that newly interpreted according to discoveries of modern sciences. As examples it is possible to read the start of creation[21.30], the spherical shape of the earth [39:5], the stages of embryo growth in the womb [39:12-16], expansion of the universe [51:47], Big Bang [21:30] and Big Crunch [21:104] theories, the balanced cycles of the elements on the earth [15-19], the photosynthesis processes in the plants [36:80], the formation of clouds [24:43], the water as the liquid of life[21.31], the water cycle[9:35], and the wind functions[30:48, 15:22], and many others as can be seen in [www.harunyahya.com]. Similarly, there are several verses in the Quran which some geographers [30:3], historicists [28:38], geologists [35:27, 78:7], astronomers [6:97, 25:61] and psychologists [13:28] have interpreted as being compatible also with their modern discoveries.

    read rest of this article on the site

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