Obama, Biden attend inaugural prayer service at Washington National Cathedral

Some 2,200 guests filled the Washington National Cathedral on Tuesday morning for the inaugural prayer service, a tradition as old as the country itself.The service is meant to provide a spiritual boost to the newly sworn-in president. Prominent national clergy — from the Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox Christian, Muslim, Jewish and Sikh traditions — will offer prayers to Obama, who is accompanied by first lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Biden and Jill Biden.“The reason we come together to pray is because we want the best for our country,” said Cardinal Donald Wuerl, the archbishop of the Washington Catholic  archdiocese, as he entered the cathedral early Tuesday. “We pray for our president, we pray for our vice president. We pray for our leaders as we move forward.”Among those participating in the service at the cathedral are: Wuerl; the Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church; Imam Mohamed Magid, president of the Islamic Society of North America and leader of the Sterling mega-mosque All Dulles Area Muslim Society; Rabbi Julie Schonfeld of the Rabbinical Assembly, the international association of rabbis from Judaism’s Conservative movement; and the Rev. Leith Anderson, president of the National Association of Evangelicals.

P.E.I. Muslims refuse to be intimidated

News Agencies – October 8, 2012


Zain Esseghaier has been a Charlottetown, Prince Edward Islam resident for the last 33 years, married an islander and raised a family here. Though his modest two-story mosque has been the target of three serious threats over the past year — last week a bottle of gasoline was left at the entrance and the structure plastered with “Defeat Jihad” posters — he remains steadfast, refusing to be intimidated.

Four years ago, the native of Tunisia and his fellow Muslim Society of P.E.I. members set about finally acquiring their own place of worship. A cross-country fundraising campaign raised about $500,000, enough to purchase a plot of land in an industrial park and build Masjid Dar As-Salam mosque. Last October, two days after a community celebration to mark the official groundbreaking at the site, a pig’s head was left nailed to a post on the property. Just over a month ago, a contractor’s truck parked near the mosque overnight was set ablaze.

In all, P.E.I. boasts roughly 500 Muslim residents, most of whom live in Charlottetown and pray together. Before having their own mosque, they would worship wherever they could find the space, from a temporary basement mosque to gymnasiums to university classrooms. Building the mosque was a way of retaining the province’s Muslim population, said the society’s president Najam Chishti.

P.E.I.’s first permanent mosque opens in Canada

News Agencies – July 14, 2012


Muslims on Prince Edward Island are celebrating the opening of the province’s first permanent mosque. They’re hoping the new $700,000 place of worship on MacAleer Drive will attract new immigrants to the Island. Currently, about 100 Muslim families live on the Island.

“We have been dreaming for this space for the past 40 years,” said Dr. Najam Chishti, president of the Muslim Society of P.E.I. “I have lived 32 years on the Island. And it’s a really historic day at the birthplace of Canada.” For the past eight years, Muslims have prayed in the basement of a building in Charlottetown’s downtown.

Besides offering a space for worship, the new mosque will offer youth and social programs for the community. The mosque will also act as an Islamic Centre, so non-Muslims can also learn about the religion. Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee, who was on hand for the opening, and said the mosque will give Muslims an added incentive to stay on P.E.I. in addition to helping attract immigrants.

Muslim Student Groups Protesting Against Prospective Alcohol Ban at London Metropolitan University

30 Apr 2012

London Metropolitan University is one of the most Muslim populated universities in Britain.  Around 20 per cent of the students of the university are Muslims, thus it has an important place in debates surrounding British Muslims. The university attracted considerable public attention in 2006 when the police raided portable buildings used by the Islamic Society in search of terrorist activities.

Last week, the university was again in the headlines when Muslim students of the university protested the university’s plan to ban the sale of alcohol from parts of their campus. LMU Islamic Society and Shia Muslim Society issued a joint statement to claim that the decision of the university is “divisive”, “irresponsible” and based on a “gross generalisation” as it would lead other students to blame Muslims for the decision.

Muslims Try to Balance Traditions, U.S. Culture on Path to Marriage

A recent article in the Washington Post discusses the balancing and adjusting of marital issues among Muslim communities in the United States. For example, the imam of the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) in Sterling, Virginia made premarital counseling a requirement for people who marry at the mosque. In addition, his wife recently launched a singles program with an emphasis on honoring modesty and discussing stories, problems, and lists of important characteristics for a Muslim wife or husband in the US. Opening up dialogue about inter-faith marriage, and women marring outside the faith, are stirring debate, as there is often a surplus of single Muslim women, as Islam permits men to marry outside the faith, but not women.

Student’s call to murder ‘the infidel’ faces jail

An accountancy student accused of calling on Muslims in Merseyside to kill non-believers denied soliciting to murder, it was reported this week. Malcolm Hodges, 43, allegedly sent letters to mosques and Islamic groups across the country on November 3 last year. Faxed to organisations including the Liverpool Muslim Society, the documents are said to have encouraged the recipients to murder “the infidel”. The accused was arrested by Metropolitan Police counter-terrorism officers in April this year.http://themuslimweekly.com/fullstoryview.aspx?NewsID=F57CA56EE76D4431A26340EC&MENUID=INTNEWS&DESCRIPTION=International%20News

Spiegel interview with Interior Minister Wolfgang Schäube: “We have no relationship to our diverse Muslim Society”

German Interior Minister Wolfgang Sch_uble discusses the pope’s criticism of Islam, the prospect of imams preaching in German, and the risk of terrorism in Germany now that the military is so busy overseas. Germany’s first-ever “Islamic conference” between Muslims and the government takes place next Wednesday in Berlin.