In late October, Bishop Younan joined almost 200 Muslim, Christian and Jewish faith leaders gathered in Amman for the one year anniversary of the release of the Amman Message by King Abdullah last year. The Amman Message is an initiative to raise the moderate voices of Islam who interpret the Koran as teaching co-existence, peace and justice among all people. Learned scholars, patriarchs and church leaders spoke about the importance of taking this message to the world to help temper the fundamentalism and extremism that threatens a true understanding of the faith as they see it. One scholar reminded the group that the standard Muslim greeting is one of Peace: May Peace be upon you. Others urged the world to listen to other voices of Islam.
“Just as we don’t judge Christians by the actions of those who came to occupy our lands, and just as we don’t judge Judaism by the actions of their extremists, so we ask the world not to judge Islam by the actions of a few extremists. Bid Laden and Zakawe are criminals and killers. They do not represent Islam,” said Salah El-Din Kaftaro from Syria.
Bishop Younan spoke on a panel about Christianity’s role in helping the Amman initiative. He praised the initiative for its theology that promotes an Islamic theology of tolerance, love and mutual respect for one another. It also condemns any kind of terrorism or extremism. He said the Arab Christian Church can be instrumental in building bridges between Islam and the Western world because of its 1400 years of living peacefully with Muslims.
See www.kingabdullah.jo for the full Amman Message …