Following Pope Benedict XVI’s controversial remarks on Islam at the University of Regensburg in September 2007, U.S. Catholic published a series of articles about Muslim-Catholic dialogue. The February 2007 special section featured an interview of two experts in interreligious dialogue, a scholarly essay about the history of the relationship between the two religions, and this story on ordinary Muslims and Catholics seeking understanding:
Won’t you be my neighbor? (U.S. Catholic, February 2007)
Friendly meetings between Catholics and Muslims can make it a beautiful day in the neighborhood for all God’s children.
A couple of Muslim children-fourth- or fifth-graders probably-squirmed and whispered to each other in the middle of midday prayer at the Muslim-American Youth Academy (MAYA) in Dearborn, Michigan.
Teachers from St. Paul Catholic School in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan were not surprised. “They’re just like our students,” they commented. During their visit to MAYA and the Islamic Center of America, St. Paul students, too, found that the Muslim children are not unlike them: Not only do they all have school uniforms, but they all worship the God of Abraham.
“Some of the students had the idea that Muslims were terrorists, and there was some fear. That was completely gone after the trip,” says St. Paul principal Mary Miller. …