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Imams told to preach in English

Anonymous Coward
User ID: 130396
09/16/2006 03:10 AM
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Imams told to preach in English
[link to www.news.com.au]

AUSTRALIA'S Islamic clerics have been told they must draw on the teachings of Islam to condemn terrorism, and preach in English.

The federal Parliamentary Secretary for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs Andrew Robb today called on more than 100 Australian imams and Muslim leaders attending a government-sponsored conference to denounce extremist misrepresentations of Islam.

“We live in a world of global terrorism where vile acts are regularly being perpetrated in the name of your faith,” Mr Robb told the two-day conference which started today.

“Because it is your faith that is being invoked as justification for these evil acts, it is your problem.

“You cannot wish it away or ignore it just because it has been caused by others.”

The taxpayer-funded conference, which was intended for earlier this year, was initially the brainchild of the now divided Australian Federation of Islamic Councils.

But organisation of the event was handed to the Muslim Community Reference Group members by Mr Robb after the AFIC failed to get it going.

A number of hardcore Islamists accepted invitations to attend.

Mr Robb urged delegates to do more to ensure young Australian Muslims knew the real meaning of the Koran.

“I say to you speak up and condemn terrorism,” he said.

“I know many in your community are doing this ... but too many are silent or simply protest that they are being branded unfairly.”

But conference keynote speaker SheikIbrahim Mogra from the Muslim Council of Britain said Muslim leaders and the Government had a shared responsibility to denounce terrorism.

“We as imams and Muslim leaders have to shout out loud as loudly as we can that terrorism has no room in Islam, it is the exact opposite of what Islam stands for,” Sheik Mogra said.

“At the same time the politicians should hear our voice.

“I have been very, very disappointed ... when the acknowledgment is not there that we are condemning the violence. It's as if we are not being heard.”

Sheik Mogra told delegates they must encourage good government initiatives.

“I called on them to proactively engage the Government, not to be cynical all the time but to pat the Government's back when they get it right and to help them when they get it wrong,” he said.

With 50 per cent of the 360,000 Muslims in Australia under 25 years of age, and most born in Australia with English as their first language, Mr Robb said it was essential for imams to have effective English language skills.

“For imams to present Islam in a truly Australian context, especially to second and third generation young Australian Muslims, it would seem essential that imams be able to preach effectively in English.

“The fact that I needed to have my address translated into several languages very clearly highlights my concern.

“(Young people's) view of Islam should come from the Mosque, not from the internet.”

And so they should preach in English. This isn't bloody Lebanon.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 126878
09/16/2006 03:57 AM
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Re: Imams told to preach in English
I don't see why they should be required to preach in English as long as their congregations are able to understand what they're saying.

I live in Panama, and we have a few churches here where the preaching is done in English instead of Spanish in order to accomodate the Americans who live here.