European Muslim Leaders Hold Summit on Integration

April 9, 2006

Source: Winston-Salem Journal

Wire Service: AP!nationworld&s=

On April 9, 2006 the Associated Press reported, "Imagine a style of Islam in which mosques link up with churches to share ideas on spirituality and Muslim scholars spur new schools of thought on how to understand and appreciate life in the West. That's what Muslim leaders from across Europe described yesterday as part of broad visions that touched on everything from Islamic law to lesson plans for schoolchildren - all with the goal of forging a clear European Muslim identity that retains traditions but does not clash with Western values. Some speakers even gave it a name: the 'theology of integration.' In quieter tones at a conference on Islam's future in Europe, there was agreement that any significant changes are still a long way off for Europe's 33 million Muslims at a time when the pressure for reform is mounting. One of the main reasons, experts and scholars said, is the current realities of Islam itself. The Quran has many passages about tolerance toward non-Muslims amid Islamic settings. But there is almost nothing in Islamic codes or religious texts dealing specifically with issues facing Muslims living as minorities in different cultures, said many at the conference."