A Guide for Christian-Muslim Dialogue
By Sharon Bidwell, JustFaith Ministries
JustFaith Ministries knew that the timing was right for the introduction of the module, In the Spirit of St. Francis and the Sultan: Muslims & Christians Working Together for the Common Good.
It is especially critical to develop genuine trust and understanding between faith traditions in these times of growing political posturing, fear, suspicion and dangerous stereotyping. Stories told by groups already completing the module tell of great benefits and surprising gifts they have realized from the experience.
The latest JustMatters module was written by George Dardess and Marvin Mich, co-authors of a book of the same title published by Orbis Books in the spring of 2011.
For example, a group that included members of Ascension Catholic Church and The Islamic Society of Brevard County, Florida, just completed the eight- week interfaith encounter. They tell of the strong bonds of friendship and mutual respect that were formed in the process. Their group has committed to meeting once a month and to continuing their journey together. They will soon begin to work together on ProjectDowntown, a service action initiated several years ago by Muslim students at the University of Miami and now spreading across the country.
This new module would appeal to Sisters of Mercy communities with their long history of engagement with immigration issues and their broad connections with interfaith groups. The module initially requires an effort to reach out in the local community to form a group with equal numbers of Christian and Muslims to participate. To find out more, visit www.justfaith.org.