Detroit’s Religious And Interfaith Leaders Working Together For Peace

Please Join In Fast Day Tomorrow July 15

Conflicts over power often hijack religious identity in order to masquerade as having a religious purpose. This does a disservice to the sacred. In metropolitan Detroit we are determined to model for the world as best we possibly can how to work on local issue as friends with a common desire to build a thriving community in which we can all share as equals.

As the world continues to watch religious extremism and violence shatter lives and communities in the Middle East, local religious and interfaith leaders are working together to create solidarity and understanding here at home.

Inspired by the parents of the slain Israeli and Palestinian youths coming together, Jewish and Muslim Tectonic leaders Hamzah Latif, Ariana Mentzel, Brenda Rosenberg, and Samia Bashoun are calling on members of all faiths in our community to show solidarity by participating in a joint fast day tomorrow, July 15, which is a Muslim fast day during Ramadan and the Jewish fast day known as 17 Tammuz.

Daniel Buttry is an IFLC board member and serves as the Global Consultant for Peace and Justice for International Ministries of the American Baptist Churches.  In response to recent developments in Iraq Dan had this to say:

“Our interfaith challenge is to build the bridges to each other to dispel the hatreds and mistrust that comes from ignorance and fear.  Sectarian or religious violence across any lines will only lead to more sorrow and more distain for the deity or religion invoked in the violence.  Each of our faiths has a strong peace stream, and that’s what we must access and build upon, both across lines of faith and also within the houses of each of our religions.  We need more extensive intra-faith dialog to establish and expand what we have come to cherish through our inter-faith dialog.  We in Detroit can especially do that, and we can pray together for the peace that all those who suffer of whatever religion so desperately need.

On June 24, the Detroit area Imams and Muslim community leaders came together to call for sectarian unity, Sunni and Shia joining in a commitment to use the opportunity of their Friday sermons during Ramadan to exhort the community to join them in standing together and recognizing that the underlying cause of the strife is political rather than religious.

The Imams’ statement affirmed:

– We condemn all types of extremism, more so the violent extremism.

– We will always speak against violence – violence begets violence – peaceful dialogue is the only way to resolving conflicts, as it was practiced by the Prophet.

– We, the Imams are keen on protecting our communities from any potential sectarianism.

– We cannot solve the problems of the Middle East. Our attention should be focused on our problems here as we face, hate, Islamphobia, youth issues, drugs etc.

– We caution our youth from being brainwashed by any faction through the web and other social media outlets in an attempt to recruit potential participants in violence from the US.

– We are calling for non-violence.

– We re-affirm code of honor signed by the imams and community leaders

Imam Steve Elturk and Imam Elahi, Sunni and Shia co-Chairs of the MMCC Imams’ Council appeared on Flashpoint, Channel 4, on Sunday morning, 6/29.

Imams Council of the Michigan Muslim Community Council

Imams Council of the Michigan Muslim Community Council