Islam

Hilary Decent: How Naperville’s faith communities are operating under phase 4 of Illinois reopening

July 27, 2020

Naperville’s faith communities are taking a cautious approach to eased restrictions now that Illinois has moved to phase four of its coronavirus recovery program.

Members of the First Congregational United Church of Christ have been meeting online since March. Rev. Mark Winters said: “Since the middle of March, we have been live streaming our services from our sanctuary. We recently switched to a pre-recorded model which allows us to include more readers and musicians (recording from their home), which is closer to how we would normally worship.”

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Presidential Nominees Rarely Speak To Muslim Audiences. Biden Did Monday

July 21, 2020

Joe Biden spoke to a notable Muslim American advocacy organization on Monday. 

Just his presence — albeit virtually, due to the pandemic, from his home in Delaware — was rather historic for Muslim leaders, who can't recall another presidential nominee speaking directly to such a large group of Muslims. The group, Emgage Action, says 3,000 people RSVP'd for its livestreamed event.

Biden didn't introduce any new policy priorities, but his tone marked a noticeable departure from how many politicians have addressed Muslims in recent years. 

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Through sci-fi and fantasy, Muslim women authors are building new worlds

July 17, 2020

When blogger Umairah Hussain asked her readers if they would join a book club for science fiction and fantasy novels by Muslim authors, she was overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response and suggestions for additions to the club’s reading list.

But there was something unusual about two dozen authors on the reading list Hussein compiled for the club, including the writers behind her favorite series, “An Ember in the Ashes” and “The Daevabad Trilogy.”

“Almost all of them were actually published by women in the past few years,” said Hussain, a sci-fi fan who blogs at...

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Citing health concerns, Westborough officials hesitant to approve religious gathering at state hospital property

July 16, 2020

The Board of Selectmen met jointly with the Board of Health July 14 to consider a request from resident Muhammad Ramzan to host upwards of 2,000 people at the Westborough State Hospital property on Saturday, Aug. 1 for Eid, a Muslim religious celebration. Eid marks the end of a month of fasting from dawn to sunset, as well as spiritual reflection and prayer.

Ramzan, a physician at UMass and member of the Worcester Islamic Center, said his congregation was looking for an outdoor facility to conduct a 30- to 45-minute religious service where worshippers would observe all health...

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Muslim civil liberties group to represent inmate denied kosher food in Michigan jail

July 9, 2020

An Islamic civil liberties and advocacy organization will represent a man who has been denied kosher food in a Michigan jail.

The Michigan chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, or CAIR, said in a statement issued Monday that it would appear as legal representative for Brandon Resch, an inmate in the Macomb County Jail, in his lawsuit against the county.

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Dearborn mosque: Woodmere Cemetery shutting out Muslims from graves they already purchased

July 6, 2020

More than two dozen religious, political and community leaders gathered Friday morning, before noon prayer at the American Moslem Society mosque in Dearborn, to call attention to a legal fight with nearby Woodmere Cemetery. 

At issue, the mosque — the oldest in Michigan — said the 150-year-old cemetery is preventing Muslims from being buried there and seeking to take advantage of them.

And, its religious leaders added, it's affecting Muslims throughout the state. 

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Alabama death row inmate hopes courts will allow chaplain by his side at execution

July 1, 2020

Charles L. Burton Jr. doesn’t want to be alone when he dies.

The death row inmate hopes a federal court will make sure that does not happen.

Burton, who was sentenced in 1992 for participation in a murder during a robbery, filed suit last year after the state of Alabama denied a Muslim inmate from having an imam serve as a spiritual adviser at his execution, citing state policy that only allowed Christian clergy to serve as chaplains in the death chamber.

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These racist memes say coronavirus masks will lead to burqas - Daily Dot

June 30, 2020

by Samira Sadeque

Nihad Awad doesn’t even find the memes frustrating anymore; he just finds it funny. He’s reviewing a tweet by user Michelle Maier (@mmba23baer). 

“I believe we are being conditioned for something,” the tweet says, along with four photos dated 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023. 

The first photo shows a woman in a face mask, the second photo shows another woman in a slightly bigger face mask, the third shows a woman in a mask covering her hair and her neck, and the fourth lands on a woman with her face, forehead, neck covered. She...

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After Floyd, raw talk, racial reckoning among US Muslims

June 29, 2020

As a young student, Hind Makki recalls, she would call out others at the Islamic school she attended when some casually used an Arabic word meaning “slaves” to refer to Black people.

“Maybe 85% of the time, the response that I would get from people ... is, ‘Oh, we don’t mean you, we mean the Americans,’” Makki said during a virtual panel discussion on race, one of many organized in the wake of George Floyd's death.

“That’s a whole other situation about anti-Blackness, particularly against African Americans,” said Makki, who identifies as a Black Arab Muslim.

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Muslim man terminated after asking for prayer breaks, complaint says

June 26, 2020

A Muslim man who says he was terminated from his job in Indianapolis last year after asking his employer to allow him to pray five times a day is accusing two companies of religious discrimination.

E’Lon Brown, 37, says Automatic Distributors Corp. and StaffMax discriminated against him by denying his requests to take brief prayer breaks and attend congregational prayers known as “jumu’ah.”

The companies then retaliated against Brown for requesting the accommodation by terminating his employment, according to a complaint filed Monday with the U.S....

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Sylvania athlete inspires religious expression bill

June 25, 2020

The Ohio Senate on Wednesday unanimously passed a bill prohibiting schools and interscholastic organizations from adopting rules banning the wearing of religious apparel during athletic and extracurricular activities.

The legislation was inspired by Noor Alexandria Abukaram, a student at The Bounty Collegium, a private school, and a member of the cross-country team at Sylvania's Northview High School. A Muslim, she was disqualified from a cross-country event in October after a race ...

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Mosque to mosque march unifies Muslim, Black community in St. Louis

June 23, 2020

Muslim residents in the area gathered on Saturday to march from one mosque to another in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Between 75 and 100 people marched a mile and a half from Masjid Bilal, 3843 West Pine Street, to Masjid Al-Mu'minun, 1435 North Grand Boulevard.

The march was organized by the Muslims of Greater St. Louis. Marilyn Aleem-Shamikh, one of the march's organizers, said various Muslim communities were planning individual protests here and there, and the group wanted to bring them all together. 

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Justice Department sues Virginia county for blocking Muslim cemetery

June 22, 2020

The U.S. Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit against a Virginia county for “imposing restrictive zoning requirements” that blocked an Islamic nonprofit from building a Muslim cemetery.

The suit, filed Friday (June 19), argues that Stafford County violated the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act by imposing overly restrictive regulations on the religious practice of All Muslim...

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In Minneapolis, a Somali-owned mental health clinic seeks to heal its community

June 18, 2020

 

In early June, Sulekha Ibrahim opened the doors of Healing Path Wellness Services, the mental health clinic she runs in South Minneapolis. 

The clinic had been closed for weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic. She and her staff were eager to get back to work, meeting clients in person.

Two days later, the clinic burned down.

“People broke in, vandalized the space, destroyed it and set it ablaze,” said Ibrahim, a 28-year-old public health nurse who co-...

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