California Episcopal Church Under Fire for Hosting Muslim Convention
Religion TodayReligious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
- 2012 Dec 07
Leaders of an Episcopal church in Pasadena, Calif., have come under fire for their decision to host the annual convention of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the Washington Post reports. All Saints Church has received dozens of emails accusing it of condoning terrorism for hosting MPAC's 12th annual convention on Dec. 15, the first ever held in a Christian church. Ryan Mauro, national security analyst at RadicalIslam.org, wrote that MPAC -- which was founded by Muslim Brotherhood followers -- was "taking advantage of naive Christians," adding that Islamists sought to create an "interfaith bloc" to defend them from critics. Mauro, who also cited MPAC statements condemning Israel in the wake of the recent Israel-Hamas conflict, quoted MPAC as saying the partnership with All Saints was the "next step in its mission by crossing the interfaith line." All Saints rector Edwin J. Bacon Jr. said the emails criticizing the church's decision to host the conference were unexpected. "We've received so much joy and reinforcement from living an interreligious life, so we simply hadn't been aware this would cause offense for some people," he said. Salam Al-Marayati, MPAC's president, said the criticism had given the conference so much free publicity that part of the marketing budget would be transferred to provide extra security.