Imam course at Catholic university sparks controversy

The president of France’s largest Muslim group, the Union of French Islamic Organizations (UOIF), Thami Breze, defended a new course for would-be Muslim spiritual leaders at the Catholic Institute in Paris. Citing the strict separation of church and state, other French institutions including the Sorbonne, Paris 8, and other state universities have declined to be involved in the project. The UOIF had previously expressed reservations bout the course, but citing the importance of studying sociology, history of France, secularism, and civics, welcomed the initiative as a positive enrichment to would-be French Muslim religious advisors.