A new class on the practice and history of Islam is being offered at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester, New York, in an effort to help remove “uncertainty” and stereotypes surrounding the religion and teach the public to embrace other faiths.
According to an article by WXXI News, the Islamic classes were “created to eliminate any uncertainty or fear people might have towards the faith, and separate the religion from extremist groups.”
The Sacred Heart Catholic Church tweeted out a post on February 11, announcing two upcoming sessions to be held February 18 and February 25, on “an introduction to the religion of Islam, including its origins, history and practice.”
The announcement encouraged church members to come “learn more about our Islamic sisters and brothers as we seek to eliminate the uncertainty and fear that often surrounds our relationship with our Muslim neighbors.”
They are even scheduling a visit to a mosque for any who are interested.
The professor who is leading the classes at the Catholic cathedral, Dr. Joseph Kelly told reporters: “There are extreme groups. There are extremists in the Jewish tradition, the Christian tradition, and, yes, the Islamic tradition. But this is a very small percentage of the people who practice it and, unfortunately, they get all the press.”
Dr. Kelly reportedly has taught similar courses at other churches, which received positive responses from participants. He claims about “80 people in each of the parishes participate” and recalls that in the beginning, attendees were reluctant to ask questions, but “by the end, I think people felt much more comfortable.”
— Sacred Heart (@CathedralROC) February 11, 2017
Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester, NY is now offering classes in Islam.
H/T: WXXI News
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