Thursday, January 15, 2015

Former Christian Univ. Announces Muslim Prayers

The Muslim call to prayer chant will now blare from a loud speaker of the bell tower at the Duke University Chapel every Friday in accordance with the Koran. Duke was founded by Methodists and continues its relationship with The United Methodist Church, but as of May 9, 2014, the Board of Trustees revised its mission statement to emphasize "generous hospitality towards diverse religious and cultural traditions . . . [and] to promote a respectful spirit of dialogue and understanding."

Previously, the aims of Duke University were "to assert a faith in the eternal union of knowledge and religion set forth in the teachings and character of Jesus Christ, the Son of God; to advance learning in all lines of truth; to defend scholarship against all false notions and ideals; to develop a Christian love of freedom and truth . . ."
-- Duke University
Charter, Bylaws, Aims, and Mission Statement

For background, click headlines below to read previous articles:

Islamic 'Call to Prayer' at National Cathedral in Washington D.C.

Muslims Force Christmas Off School Calendar in Maryland

Colorado School Visits Mosque, Enforces Sharia Law

Massachusetts Students Forced To Learn Muslim Conversion

Stanford Hires Anti-Christian Lesbian Ordained Priest

Methodist Duke University Ups Fees for Sex Changes

Allah Worshiped in Virginia Methodist Church

Methodist Seminaries Train Pluralistic Clergy

Also read myriad examples of hostility toward Christianity on college campuses including censorship of Christian speech.

UPDATE 1/16/15: Duke Hears America, Cancels Muslim 'Call to Prayer'

-- From "Muslim call to prayer to resonate from Duke University chapel every Friday" by Susan Svrluga, Washington Post 1/15/15

On Friday, the Muslim call to prayer will sound from the Duke Chapel, a new weekly tradition for the campus.

In a Duke University news release, Imam Adeel Zeb, Muslim chaplain at Duke, said: “The adhan is the call to prayer that brings Muslims back to their purpose in life, which is to worship God and serves as a reminder to serve our brothers and sisters in humanity. The collective Muslim community is truly grateful and excited about Duke’s intentionality toward religious and cultural diversity.”

Christy Lohr Sapp, the chapel’s associate dean for religious life, said in the release: “This opportunity represents a larger commitment to religious pluralism that is at the heart of Duke’s mission. It connects the university to national trends in religious accommodation.”

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Duke Chapel To Allow Muslim Call To Prayer" by Cavan Sieczkowski, The Huffington Post 1/14/15

The Adhan will be sung in Arabic, then followed by an English translation, according to a Facebook event announcing the call.

The chapel also holds an interdenominational Christian service on Sunday mornings and a Catholic mass on Sunday evenings, along with other services and events. Omid Safi, director at Duke's Islamic Studies Center, told The Huffington Post that the response to the decision has been "overwhelmingly positive" thus far.

"Almost everyone that has written in has celebrated it as a sign of Duke University's commitment to creating a welcoming and pluralistic community," he said in an email Wednesday. "We see it as a sign of including our diversity -- yes, including our religious diversity -- in the public arena. We have over 700 Muslim members of the Duke community, and this is a day to be seen -- and, yes, heard. It is a validating experience to tell one another that we can and do co-exist not by denying our particularity, but through them. There is room at Duke for Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, atheists, agnostics ... people of every faith and no faith."

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Duke University's decision to sound Muslim call to prayer riles some" by Emma Lacey-Bordeaux, CNN 1/15/15

Starting Friday, the Duke Muslim Students Association will chant the call, or adhan, from the Duke Chapel bell tower. The adhan signals the beginning of the weekly prayer service. It's ubiquitous in Muslim countries the world over; not so in the Carolina piedmont.

Various Christian denominations hold prayer and worship services in the chapel. The school also has spaces dedicated spaces on campus for various faiths, including Jews, Hindus and Buddhists.

"Just as the bells announce chapel worship in the building on Sundays, the adhan announces Muslim prayers on Fridays," the chapel said.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Franklin Graham slams Duke University over Muslim call to prayer" by Adam Bell, Charlotte Observer 1/15/15

[Evangelist Franklin] Graham, the son of evangelist Billy Graham, urged people to withdraw their support of Duke until the policy is reversed.

“As Christianity is being excluded from the public square and followers of Islam are raping, butchering, and beheading Christians, Jews, and anyone who doesn’t submit to their Sharia Islamic law, Duke is promoting this in the name of religious pluralism,” Graham wrote on his Facebook page Wednesday.

Over the years, some of Graham’s critics have accused him of demonizing Islam.

Graham has defended his outspoken ways, saying he is simply speaking out like his father did in his younger years.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

Also read Rev. Franklin Graham Loves Muslim People, Hates Islam

From "Duke University decision invites Sunni, Shiite conflict to campus" by Will Hall, Christian Examiner 1/15/15

According to the think tank Council on Foreign Affairs [CFR], it is the ancient religious divide between Sunnis and Shias that "have fed a Syrian civil war that threatens to transform the map of the Middle East ... and sparked a revival of transnational jihadi networks that poses a threat beyond the region."

But, university officials seem unaware of this deep religious divide within Islam, and at least publicly, have not addressed concerns sure to arise about whether they will honor both sects.

Even the issue of imams has divided the Islamic faithful and it relates to the origin of the conflict.

CFR summarizes that for mainstream Shias, there are only twelve imams, historic holy men, the last of which has been in a state of occultation, or "hiddenness," since 939 A.D. to return at the end of time. Consequently, for them an imam has a direct bloodline to Mohammad, through Husayn, the son of Ali who was the cousin, son-in-law and successor of Mohammad. Their senior clerics are called ayatollahs.

Sunnis, who compose 85 percent of the world's 1.6 billion Muslims, on the other hand, do not recognize a bloodline, but elect religious leaders. For them, imams are men who lead prayer services in mosques. Moreover, 40 percent of Sunnis, according to a 2012 Pew Research Center report, do not regard Shias as proper Muslims.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

Also read Congress: America No Longer a Christian Nation

And read President Obama Praises Islam for Making America What It Is