The Land of St. Benedict is “open” to Islam

July 4, 2013

 

A center for prayer and for the promotion of Islamic culture will be inaugurated on Sunday afternoon in Cassino by the association of Islamic culture known as “the Light.” The event congregated provincial political institutions and the regent of the Abbey of Montecassino. “One of our goals “ said the president of the association, ironically, bears a name dear to Christianity, Massimiliano Evangelista, 41 year-old Cassino man, converted to Islam in 2004, was there to promote interfaith dialogue and in particular with the Catholic faith with which “we share so many things. We want to know what Islam is, and tell what it is not, dispelling stereotypes created by the Western media.” There are about 400 believers of the Islamic faith in Cassino. “We want a place where, among other things, to pray together so that every individual has the right to practice their religious beliefs. In Cassino there is a large Moroccan community, but there are also some Egyptians and Lebanese, Palestinians and Bangladesh. We had no difficulty in obtaining the necessary permits, because the martyr city has repeatedly demonstrated openings cultural integration among the people.” What do you say to those who fear that such centers can be meeting places for extremists? “It’s a risk that does not exist” says Evangelista.