The next session of the Interreligious Leaders Forum, an ongoing group of clergy and key leaders in religious communities sponsored by SiVIC, the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council, will be open to the public as part of the Silicon Valley Reads program.
Four panelists will discuss their reading of The Muslim Next Door: The Qur’an, the Media, and that Veil Thing by Sumbul Ali-Karamali, a Bay Area author. The panel will include:
- Johanna Koudsi, a woman who became interested in Islam when she married a man with a Muslim background. After studying Islam for many years, she now organizes dialogues using Skype which connect local students and students at Al-Azhar University in Egypt
- Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones, Pastor of the First Unitarian Church of San Jose, a member of the Steering Committee which led to the founding of the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council in 2011
- Fatih Sarigoz, President of the Silicon Valley chapter of the Pacifica Foundation, a Turkish-American group closely involved in interreligious dialogue and cooperation, and
- Sabuhi Siddique, Vice-Chair of the Santa Clara County Human Relations Commission and a member of the Baitul Baseer mosque in Milpitas
The book The Muslim Next Door was the Ali-Karamali’s response to the many questions about Islam that arose particularly following 9/11. She describes many of the aspects of Islam that have been puzzling to outsiders: the nature of the Qur’an, leadership and authority in Islam, and cultural and political issues that lead to misunderstanding. Following initial conversation among the panelists, there will be opportunity for those present to join in the conversation.
The gathering will take place on Thursday, March 8, 2012, 1:30 – 3:00 pm, at the First Congregational Church of San Jose, 1980 Hamilton Avenue (at Leigh).
The gathering is free of charge and open to the public. The organizers would appreciate an RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org to enable them to plan the session.