Dr. Mohammad Ali Shomali, Director of London’s Islamic Center, will present the lecture, entitled, “The Impact of Christian-Muslim Relations on World Peace,” at Canadian Mennonite University.
A revered Muslim scholar will give a public lecture exploring Christian-Muslim relations at Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) this month.
Dr. Mohammad Ali Shomali, Founding Director of the International Institute for Islamic Studies (IIIS) in Qom, Iran, will present the lecture, entitled, “The Impact of Christian-Muslim Relations on World Peace,” at 7:00 PM on Wednesday, March 30. Shomali will speak in Marpeck Commons (2299 Grant Ave.). Admission is free, and all are welcome.
“We are excited to host Dr. Shomali at CMU,” says Dr. Harry Huebner, Director of International and Inter-Faith Theological Initiatives at CMU. “He has a deep commitment to peace, justice, love, and mercy. It will be interesting to hear him speak on the significance of the relationship between Christians and Muslims on world peace.”
A successful teacher and an engaging storyteller, Shomali is a graduate of the Islamic Seminaries of Qom, and also holds Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in Western Philosophy from the University of Tehran. He earned his PhD from the University of Manchester in the UK and wrote his doctoral thesis on ethical relativism.
In addition to his work with the IIIS, Shomali is the Director of London’s Islamic Centre of England.
Shomali’s visit stems from an ongoing relationship between Shi’a Muslim scholars from Iran and Mennonite scholars from Canada and the U.S. These scholars first met in 2002 to start an ongoing series of dialogues that aim to improve understanding between Muslims and Christians.
The seventh dialogue is scheduled to take place at CMU in 2017.
Huebner adds that Islam is often misunderstood in the mainstream media, and hearing from Muslims directly is one way for people to explore new perspectives.
The March 30 lecture marks the first time Shomali will make a public presentation as part of his visit to CMU, providing the public with a unique opportunity.
“The news doesn’t give us a good understanding of what Islam is,” Huebner says. “Getting to know people from Iran is one way of cutting across that.”
A Christian university in the Anabaptist tradition, CMU’s Shaftesbury campus offers undergraduate degrees in arts, business, humanities, music, sciences, and social sciences, as well as graduate degrees in theology, ministry, peacebuilding and collaborative development, and an MBA. CMU has over 800 full-time equivalent students, including those enrolled in degree programs at the Shaftesbury and Menno Simons College campuses and in its Outtatown certificate program.