(WASHINGTON, D.C., 10/11/07) – A representative of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today joined 137 other Muslim leaders and scholars in sending a first-of-its-kind open letter designed to promote understanding between Muslims and Christians worldwide.
CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad signed the 29-page letter, titled “A Common Word Between Us and You,” which was sent to Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and more than 20 other Christian leaders.
The letter states in part:
“Muslims and Christians together make up well over half of the world’s population. Without peace and justice between these two religious communities, there can be no meaningful peace in the world. The future of the world depends on peace between Muslims and Christians.
“The basis for this peace and understanding already exists. It is part of the very foundational principles of both faiths: love of the One God, and love of the neighbour. These principles are found over and over again in the sacred texts of Islam and Christianity. The Unity of God, the necessity of love for Him, and the necessity of love of the neighbour is thus the common ground between Islam and Christianity. . .
“So let our differences not cause hatred and strife between us. Let us vie with each other only in righteousness and good works. Let us respect each other, be fair, just and kind to another and live in sincere peace, harmony and mutual goodwill.”
To read the full text of the letter, click here.
The interfaith initiative was coordinated by the Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought in Amman, Jordan.
“Mainstream Muslims are reclaiming the true message of Islam and assuring Christian leaders of the Islamic message of peace and reconciliation as stated in the Quran,” said Awad.
“We intend to take this important initiative to the larger Muslim community to seek endorsement and support,” said CAIR Board Chairman Parvez Ahmed.
CAIR, America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 33 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Rabiah Ahmed, 202-488-8787 or 202-439-1441, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org