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Switch to Forum Live View Episcopal? Muslim Priest
9 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2009 - 9:08AM #11
Posts: 228



Thank you for your responses. I posed the same question on the Evangelical board and the Traditional board.   I was really surprised that only the Progressive Board responded.  The Evangelicals questioned me for asking the question.  They thought I was trying to start an argument.  The Traditionals asked why I would pose such a question and referred me to the Anglican board.  Actually, I am Anglican and my question originated from the Anglican board.

I had hoped to garner a range of responses.  I admit I have no problem with the Episcopal/Muslim priest at all.  But from the responses on this board and on the Anglican board, I seem to gather that even progressives are somewhat put off by an priest who claims both affiliations.  There are so many possibilities that could come from this.  She could be enriched by what she learns from Islam that could make her a better priest.  I have heard of Christians who ventured into other religions and eventually returned to their own, but felt so much closer to God as a result of their venture.  On the other hand there could be someting in it even for an Evangelical. She might end up bringing the Muslims to her faith.  That happened in the Phillipines when a Christian minister began to study the Koran with a group of Muslims.  He was able to show them from the Koran that God was in Christ.  The whole group was baptized and now that is one of the largest churches in the Phillipines!

Again, thanks for your responses.

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9 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2009 - 11:42AM #12
Posts: 269

Hello, slate,

I have the impression from your last post that you find the progressive response to the idea of someone who is both Christian and Muslim uniformly negative. So I will restate the observation that I made earlier that "other scholars (progressive, no doubt), state that, 'depending on how one interprets the tenets of the two faiths, it is, indeed, possible to be both.'"

For me (a heterodox Presbyterian) religion is as much about relationship as it is about belief. It is true that Christians share a common document (the Bible), but regard its authority in a wide variety of ways. Many also share a variety of creedal statements, but again they have a variety of internal responses to them. Even many those who take ordination vows do so with some latitude, and I personally think that is very worthwhile.

I don't think our "Muslim Episcopal sister" should resign. I think her presence in the Christian communiy is a kind of witness that could prove a useful vehicle for discussion--a "teachable moment" if you will.

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9 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 6:50PM #13
Posts: 1

I have no issue with her being a Muslim and a Christian.  I don't hold to the concept that being Christian is about beliefs.  To me it's about having a relationship with God, exeriencing God, as shown by the way of Jesus Christ.  There are those that experience the same Spirituality through others who have demonstrated ways, on top of that there are many simliarities between Christianity and the other major religions, specifically when you distill it down to Jesus' teachings themselves (very much a non-exclucivist).  To Exclude someone because they choose to be both Muslim and Christian goes against everything Jesus taught.  Unconditional love ceases to be unconditional when you put a condition on it.

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9 years ago  ::  Apr 09, 2009 - 10:23PM #14
Posts: 802

Mar 25, 2009 -- 3:00PM, slate wrote:

I read about a female Episcopal priest who is, or claims to be, also a Muslim.  A bishop of the church has asked for her resignation.  As of now, I have not heard that she has resigned.What are your thoughts about this?

One can borrow practices and concepts from another religious tradition to enhance one's own, but only one discipline can be the unifying principle.   The best sermons I have heard did borrow concepts from other Faiths to help clarify an idea that was not as developed in ours.  

As Progressive Christians we know that there is nothing wrong with Islam, nor with choosing it as one's personal spiritual path.

As a Spiritual leader of the Christian tradition, she should be confirming the validity of our tradition to those in her spiritual care.  Affirming one is a choice and a discipline in itself; the choice does not negate the validity of another Faith, but confirms the power of choice and spiritual discipline.

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9 years ago  ::  Apr 14, 2009 - 3:06PM #15
Posts: 20

The Quran actually even forbids Muslims to have Jewish or Christian friends. How could a Muslim at the same time be a Christian?

We also have to remember that a priest's principal duty is to administer the eucharist, the flesh and blood of our lord. In Islam on the other hand, they believe God never became man, and they still practice animal sacrifice.

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9 years ago  ::  May 22, 2009 - 2:29PM #16
Posts: 88


I heard this story and I believe it is, in fact, a necessary step for both Islam and Christianity.

I am not speaking of a sort of bland universalism, but rather of an incorporation and clarification of what is present in the Quran, Torah and Gospels that leads us to the truth. I have found I understand Quran through Gospels and vice versa. The Quran commands us to refer back to the texts that preceed it -- all the current stuff about abrogation is misguided propaganda born of military necessity.

I count myself Muslim and Christian in a very real sense. It all hinges on how you understand the nature of Christ: for my view, see my blog:





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9 years ago  ::  May 23, 2009 - 12:38PM #17
Posts: 4,487

Hi, I thought I should weigh in on this.  I am a progressive catholic from the Roman tradition.  I was also somewhat taken aback by the lukewarm response we progressives posted on this thread.  But, as the originator of the thread points out, we progressives were the only group who kicked it around enough to respond at all.  I think part of the hesitancy is because the Episcopal priest is also a Moslem, and we are living in a time when there is a lot of anti-Islamic bias because of the perception that Islam supports the terroristic campaigns often being waged in its name.  I'm pretty sure that few here would object if the Priest were an Episcopalian and say a Buddhist (one of the non-Christian faiths most progressives, including myself, admire and identify with).  But even we find it hard to shed our culture's (and religion's) anti-Islamic bias.  My only answer to this is that if it deepens her spirituality and makes her a better priest, then it is good.  Also, anyone who questions that there is a real and deep spirituality that can be found in Islam need only read or hear the poems of Rumi to know that authentic spirituality comes from many traditions, including Islam.  Don't know if I added anything beyond what everyone here knows already, but I thought I'd give my two cents.  Dave

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9 years ago  ::  May 23, 2009 - 6:04PM #18
Posts: 474

Mar 25, 2009 -- 3:00PM, slate wrote:

I read about a female Episcopal priest who is, or claims to be, also a Muslim.  A bishop of the church has asked for her resignation.  As of now, I have not heard that she has resigned.What are your thoughts about this?


It is her professional responsibility, by virtue of being a priest in the PECUSA, to uphold the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the Protestant Episcopalian Church-USA.  I would have no problem on this issue except for the fact that she is a priest.  If she is not prepared to uphold her professional responsibility, however, she should resign in favor of someone who will uphold it.  I suspect the same requirement would apply if she were an imam of any Moslem congregation.

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9 years ago  ::  May 23, 2009 - 9:28PM #19
Posts: 176

Muslims can have Jews & Christians as friends, just that they aren't suppose to be your closest friends.   A lot of Muslim men even marry Jewish and Christian women because they are people of the book or believers in God.  Some people need to not quote verses of other people's faith if they don't know what they're talking about... Just like in the bible you can't look at one verse and know the meaning or understanding.  You have to read what's in the verses before it and after it to really understand.  Many christians, jews, hindus, etc. are converting to islam and everywhere around the world.  I was born in a x-tian family but converted to Islam almost six years ago, and by my own choice.  I was just following what my parents thought to be true.  Now I know the real truth!  Alhamdulillah, all praise be to Allah(God in arabic).   White, ex-military, still works for the military(27 yrs.) and Proud to be Muslim.

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9 years ago  ::  May 24, 2009 - 11:52AM #20
Posts: 1,094


No need for her to resign her position.  If one understands what it is to be Muslim and what she is practicing,  Than all praise, glory, thanks  and worship are to God and God alone.

Our responsibility is to uphold the guidelines set by God and not set by man (Human Beigns)!  Do we all really know what our duties and responsibilities are and to Who???????

Peace, Wardah

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