By LEO HOHMANN
Parents, pastors, politicians and educators will join a Muslim imam at a mosque Friday in Oakland County, Michigan, to pray and discuss how to make their schools and community safer in an era of mass school shootings.
The Muslim Unity Center, a mosque in the wealthy Detroit suburb of Bloomfield Hills, is hosting an “Interfaith Prayers and Symbolic Walkout Vigil” April 20 that feeds off of the anti-gun fervor created in the wake of the mass-shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland that killed 17 students in February.
The Muslim Unity Center, led by Shaykh Mohamed Almasmari, will host the event at 6 p.m., after its Friday afternoon Jummah or “call to prayer.”
Almasmari is heavily involved in the interfaith movement in Michigan. He has an outreach program, featured on the mosque’s website, called Building Bridges with our Neighbors.
A regular part of his presentations to Christian churches is a segment on “Islamophobia and its impact.”
“Islamophobia” is essentially a Western version of the Islamic blasphemy laws, where non-Muslims are not allowed to speak critically of Islam without incurring severe social penalties. Actual violence against Muslims is rare in the United States, and many such claims have turned out to be fake. [See Fake Hate Crimes, by Kevin Williamson, National Review, March 5, 2017]
In the wake of Donald Trump’s election as president, the Council on American-Islamic Relations has made a huge priority of promoting Muslim Americans as persecuted religious minorities struggling to survive as victims in the oppressive society of America.
Churches helping resettle Muslim refugees
Pastors of at least two Christian churches in Oakland County — First Presbyterian Church of Birmingham and Christ Cranbrook Episcopal Church — plan to join Shaykh Almasmari at his mosque Friday for interfaith prayers.
Christ Cranbrook works with Samaritas, a partnership of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services with Episcopal Migration Ministries, to help resettle refugees into southeastern Michigan, according to the church newsletter.
Michigan has been a popular destination for refugees making hijra, an Arabic term for migration, from the Islamic world with the help of government contractors like Samaritas. The state has received 32,401 refugees from Muslim-majority nations since 2002, resettled primarily by Catholic Charities and Samaritas, according to data at the U.S. Refugee Processing Center.
Rabbi Mark Miller from Temple Beth El in Bloomfield Hills, the oldest Reform [liberal] synagogue in Michigan, is also scheduled to participate in Friday’s interfaith prayers to Allah, as are the township supervisors of Bloomfield and West Bloomfield townships, and the superintendents of four public-school districts.
The prayer vigil, symbolic walkout, and panel discussion will be followed by a “Stand Up Against Bullying Lecture,” according to the official flyer [see below]. A discussion about bullying of Muslim students is likely to come up.
“These events typically like to attach themselves to the issue of the day, and then bring it back to Muslim oppression in some way,” said Philip Haney, a retired Homeland Security officer and co-author of the book “See Something Say Nothing.”
Haney was in Bloomfield Hills just last week giving a presentation at Bloomfield Hills Baptist Church on the deception of the interfaith movement.
Haney’s research includes details on the latest national push called the Alliance of Virtue for the Common Good, in which 400 Christian, Jewish and Muslim faith leaders met Feb. 7 in Washington D.C. to declare their mutual respect. The alliance, initiated by the Muslim Shaykh Abdullah bin-Bayyah in cooperation with the Dallas, Texas-based ministry of Rev. Bob Roberts, is modeled after the Islamic prophet Muhammad’s seventh-century outreach to his non-Muslim contemporaries. The Alliance of Virtue has the backing of the Parliament of World Religions and its February conference in Washington was reportedly attended by a surprising number of evangelicals.
President Trump’s newly appointed ambassador for international religious freedom, Sam Brownback, made his first public speech at the February conference and declared his support for their work, saying “this is the big one.”
“For pastors who sign onto these types of agreements, we are way past the point where they can claim ignorance as an excuse,” Haney said. He reminds them that Islam denies the Trinity, denies that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, denies His death by crucifixion, denies his resurrection and denies his future second coming as the Christian Savior.
“If that were all you knew about Islam, it’s more than enough,” Haney said. “Why would you go into the mosques and pray with the imams [to Allah]?”
The “common word” that forms the basis of the three-faith alliance is that “we all worship Allah,” Haney said. He cautions Christians to take Islamic beliefs about Jesus into consideration before coming to the conclusion that Allah is the “same God” they worship.
Schools support interfaith event at mosque
Friday’s event at the Bloomfield Hills mosque has the support not only of several churches and at least one synagogue but also the local public schools.
Bloomfield Hills School District is promoting the event on its website, as is the nearby Birmingham school district website and the Walled Lake school district website. The school districts describe the event as including interfaith prayers with Muslim, Christian and Jewish leaders as well as a “community conversation” designed to “educate” the public and “raise awareness and increase involvement around building safe schools and communities in the wake of the Parkland shooting and in light of remembering the many victims of gun violence across the country.”
This is just one of the many interfaith events sweeping the nation.
In Missoula, Montana, the First Presbyterian Church hosted a “Celebrate Islam Week” event the week of April 9-14.
The mission was to spread tolerance and understanding through the “aromas of shared food,” according to Imam Jamal Rahman, who has been organizing such events for years.
“These personal connections are critical. We can coexist with differences. People are starting to realize you simply have to honor and celebrate diversity,” Imam Rahman of Seattle told the Missoulian.
Last Monday’s feast was the second annual event organized by Missoula-based Standing Alongside America’s Muslims, or SALAM (which means “peace” in Arabic).
Teamed with a liberal Reformed rabbi and a pastor from the ultra-liberal United Church of Christ, Rahman has been giving talks wherever he can find a church or synagogue that wishes to learn about Islam [which means submission not peace].
At the April 20 event in Michigan, “interfaith leaders from across different religious communities will offer a prayer for the future,” according to the promotional media on the school-system websites.
Interestingly, I could find no mention of Friday’s interfaith event on the Unity mosque’s website, but I did find an anti-Trump video titled “Moses’ Mother vs. Pharoah; Trump vs. Muslims; Faith & Reliance on Allah.” In the video Imam Almasmari compares the Pharoah’s harsh treatment of Moses’ family to the “oppression” of Muslims today in America under Trump. He urges his congregants to “do whatever we can do, to speak out against injustice and speak out against oppression.”
Watch Almasmari preaching about the oppression of American Muslims under Trump in video below.
Dick Manasseri, an Oakland County resident and spokesman for Secure Michigan, said interfaith cooperation with mosques has broad support in Michigan, especially among left-leaning churches.
“Basically, part of what they are celebrating here is the death of people at the hands of the enemy which in their mind is the white American gun-owning Trump voter,” he said. “They are just masterful at this, taking current event news and putting it into the perspective of Muslim oppression. They are highlighting domestic terrorism. Domestic terror is a plus for them. Remembering Parkland and remembering Las Vegas works well in this regard. The targeting of conservative Christians as white supremacists, racists and Islamophobes is more aggressive than ever in Michigan. This notion that all the bad people are domestic terrorists is just another way of saying ‘Bible-believing Christians.'”
In January LeoHohmann.com reported that the FBI’s Detroit office hosted one of its quarterly BRIDGES outreach meetings at which the FBI emphasized domestic terrorism and Islamophobia as a bigger problem than Islamic terror.
“This is just them hopping on that same theme that the federal govt continues to give them,” Manasseri said of the interfaith event at Muslim Unity Center.
Republican Patrick Colbeck is the only gubernatorial candidate in the upcoming primaries from either party who has gone on record in favor of protecting Michigan’s women and children against the spread of Sharia principles, such as honor violence and “women as property,” Manasseri said.
Leo Hohmann is a veteran journalist and author of the 2017 book “Stealth Invasion: Muslim Conquest through Immigration and Resettlement Jihad.” If you appreciate this type of original, fact-based and independent reporting, please consider a donation of any size to this website. We accept no advertising and are beholden to no one.