It is baffling and frustrating to hear some politicians, media and other leaders talk about a lack of Muslim response to terrorist and other Islamist-linked outrages. It seems as if sometimes people simply only want to see and hear what they want to see and hear. Earlier last week the following open letter from our Islamic community to our local Toowoomba Catholic bishop was received by myself and other faith and community leaders. It speaks of the continued revulsion of almost all Muslims to acts such as the recent killing of Father Jacques Hamel and the deep shared commitment to peace and humanity...
Dear Bishop Robert McGuckin,
Peace be with you and your congregation.
On behalf of the Muslim community I express sincere condolences for the horrific murder of Father Jacques Hamel in France. We feel extremely sorry for this terrible loss of such a dedicated religious leader.
Our prayers and thoughts are with Father Hamel and his family and colleagues. May God be kind to him and his near ones.
This is an act of brutal murder regardless of the identity of the killer and his evil association. There is no room in Islam to kill any religious figures or destroy any place of worships, and it is more so for the People of the Book. In fact, the Qur’an prohibits killing of any innocent person, and it teaches that killing one person is like killing the entire humankind and saving one person is like saving the entire humankind. It is anti-Islamic to kill any religious personality, women, children, elderly, sick etc and destroy crops even at the time of war. This killer and his associates have brought shame on our religion of peace. He does not represent anything of Muslims and Islam.
The Grand Mufti of Australia has strongly condemned the murder of Father Hamel (see letter attached here) along with all Muslim leaders globally.
The ongoing killing of innocent and unprotected people is a serious concern and a disgrace to the mankind be it in France, Germany, USA, or Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Yamen, Pakistan, Kashmir, Myanmar etc and by anyone or whatever reasons. Let us remain united and peaceful against any extremism and violent acts so that we don’t give up to the wishes of those who would love to benefit by diving us.
May Allah protect His creation, especially the mankind, from the destruction of few so called human acting as devil under the cover of religion or anything else.
Shahjahan Khan (on behalf of the Toowoomba Garden City mosque)
Jo Inkpin is an Anglican priest serving as Minister of Pitt St Uniting Church in Sydney, a trans woman, theologian & justice activist. These are some of my reflections on life, spirit, and the search for peace, justice & sustainable creation.