An organization aimed at educating the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community about issues facing gay African Americans teamed up with an Islamic group to host the "Queer Muslim Gathering." The event, which started on Friday evening and continued throughout Saturday, was held in Detroit, Mich., and featured workshops intended to empower gay adherents.
Imam Daayiee Abdullah (Photo Credit: DaayieesPlaceOfInnerPeace.com)
Put together by Muslims for Progressive Values and a group called KICK, the gathering brought together gay, lesbian and transgender individuals from a variety of cultural backgrounds in an effort to help them learn more about their sexual identity and faith.
According to text advertising the event on the KICK web site, the conference covered homosexuality and the Koran, developing inclusive prayer spaces and a number of other related subjects.
The two-day initiative featured Imam Daayiee Abdullah, a gay Muslim leader who grew up in Detroit, but who now lives and works in Washington, D.C., the Detroit Free Press reports. Explaining the conference's intent, the Islamic faith leader, who is the director of LGBT outreach for Muslims for Progressive Values, noted the importance of helping the LGBT community rectify sexuality with the Muslim faith.
"We feel it is important for LGBT Muslims to be included as equals into the straight Muslim society," Abdullah said, going on to note that he believes Islamic views against homosexuality are rooted in cultural misrepresentations and not God's truth.
In addition to debunking homophobia, the faith leader, who is based at the Light of Reform Mosque in the nation's capital, seeks to empower gays and lesbians.
And KICK's executive director, Curtis Lipscomb, told the Detroit Free Press that the group is hoping to create a more inclusive Islamic atmosphere -- one in which people feel accepted regardless of sexual orientation or preference.
"We confidently believe that in the next 20 years, this Islam will be the norm in America," Lipscomb told the outlet.
This development comes as other faiths are also making decisions about how to handle homosexuality. Most mainstream religious systems take a stand against gay marriage and believe that homosexuality stands in opposition to God's plan for humanity. The purpose of the "Queer Muslim Gathering," though, was to dispel this ideology.
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