On Sunday, February 20, Communications Coordinator Amina Sharif and Outreach Coordinator Gerald Hankerson gave a presentation on Muslims in America and common misconceptions about Islam to the congregants of First United Methodist Church in Western Springs.
Reverend Dean Shapley of First United extended the invitation for CAIR-Chicago to come and speak after Rev. Terry Jones of Dove World Outreach Center church in Florida garnered attention for his plan to burn Q’urans on September 11th last year. Rev. Shapley emphasized that after this unfortunate and racially motivated incident, his church chose to give away Q’urans in an act of solidarity and tolerance for other religions.
Shapley said, “Amina and Gerald were highly engaging speakers. Not only was their presentation informative, they in fact left the congregants wanting to know more about Islam.”
Sharif also said it was a wonderful experience. She said, “I really enjoyed speaking to the congregants of the First United Methodist church. They were so welcoming and engaging and asked wonderful, thoughtful questions. We had great discussions on what Muslim-Americans face, on the rights of Muslim women, and also what our communities have in common.”
Hankerson added, “This opportunity is another wonderful example for other communities of faith to come together and learn about one another.”