Thursday, 12 September 2019

Interfaith consultation with
the Muslim community

Members of the Church of Ireland interfaith consultation on the steps of the Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland this afternoon

Patrick Comerford

I spent much today [12 September 2019] taking part in a Church of Ireland interfaith consultation that focused on engagement with the Muslim community in Dublin.

After the Sikh commemorations of Max Macauliffe in Templeglantine, Co Limerick, yesterday, this has been a busy week for interfaith engagements.

The day was organised by the Interfaith Working Group of the Church of Ireland, chaired by Bishop Kenneth Kearon of Limerick.

The principal speaker was Dr Ali Selim, the resident theologian at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland (ICCI), who has studied at the Irish School of Ecumenics and lectured in Trinity College Dublin.

Six or seven dioceses in the Church of Ireland were represented at the consultation, which took place in both the Church of Ireland Theological Institute and the Islamic Centre, and included a visit to the mosque and school in Clonskeagh and lunch at the restaurant at the centre.

The previous interfaith consultation earlier this year [5 March 2019] included a seminar with Rabbi Zalman Lent and a visit to the Dublin Jewish Museum in Portobello, an area also known as Dublin’s ‘Little Jerusalem.’

These interfaith encounters are positive experiences of face-to-face dialogue and an opportunity for the Church of Ireland to engage with the cultural and religious diversity that is contributing positively to shaping Irish identity today.

Inside the mosque in Clonskeagh earlier this afternoon (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2019)

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