Muslims are choosing to follow Jesus; joining his family

Muslims are choosing to follow Jesus; joining his family

Today in Britain growing numbers of Muslims are choosing to follow Jesus; joining his family. We need to understand their needs, care for them and help them grow in him. And we want to learn from them.

God is answering the prayers of many over years and now there are churches across the country grappling with the joy and the challenge of welcoming believers from a Muslim background.

This month we are highlighting Joining the Family (JtF) resources – here is a message from Roxy, JtF coordinator.

I love the word hospitality which for Muslims often starts in the heart attitude of honouring guests into their own homes.

The Greek word for hospitality, Xenia (guest friendship), is again a heart attitude offering friendship to someone who may be far from home.

The word Xenophobia is the fear or distrust of someone who seems strange or foreign.

May we ask God to change our hearts towards people from Muslim backgrounds and not be afraid but be open to those who are far from home when they enter our churches, places that may seem strange and a long way from their spiritual home if not their physical home.

Hospitality is something I appreciate about Eastern cultures. I have visited many countries of Asia and the Middle East, and in each place it’s the same. When I enter a home I will automatically be offered refreshments… It’s biblical too. Do you recall the account of Abraham rushing to kill the fattened calf for three random strangers who passed by his tent? That kind of elaborate hospitality seems extravagant to western readers but makes sense in an Eastern culture… But this full-blown treatment of guests can all get too much… That’s why I like the idea of ‘laid back’ hospitality. I want my friend of Muslim background to feel welcome and I will always offer drinks and nibbles if they drop by… Laid back hospitality lowers the barriers for me and, I believe, makes it easier for my friend to know they can come and I won’t have to make special arrangements.
— Joining the Family book. P. 74-75

I pray that as described by Tim Green (above) we would be people who offer guest friendship to people of Muslim backgrounds in laid back hospitality.

Joining the Family aims to enable churches to be places of welcome for believers of Muslim backgrounds through providing resources, training and support to church leaders and those who disciple believers of Muslim backgrounds in the UK. Our vision is threefold:

  1. Churches are more confident to receive believers of a Muslim background

  2. Theological trainees have an increased awareness and knowledge of the needs of believers from a Muslim background

  3. Believers of Muslim backgrounds receive better emotional and spiritual support

To find out more or to contact JtF head to:

Elliot's weekly roundup: How not to celebrate Easter

image credit: flickr aloush

image credit: flickr aloush

What' in the news this week? Clothes, photos, comedy and how not to celebrate Easter.

New York Hijabis, available on i player, gave an insight into the world of modest fashion in America. Fabian Muir's exhibition entitled Urban Burqa has been in the news. The exhibition showing a series burqa images in an urban setting as a critique of the far right, populist opinion, and Islamophobia. 

49% of Australians in a 2016 poll supported a ban on Muslims entering the country.   

Comedienne  Maysoon Zayid has also shared her experience on being a disabled Muslim American on BBC Radio 4 programme Litter from America this week. In the wake of 9/11 she decided to use humour to fight against stereotypes and established the Arab American Comedy Festival. She is also one of the most watched TED presenters of all time.


The bigots like to attack me on twitter...

If you did this in your country, you would be beheaded!
You mean New Jersey? 

She continues by saying: "There are millions of people who really despise people like me, who are not white, who are not Christian, who are not able bodied..." Let's not be one of that group. Also let's not take the approach taken recently in Birmingham, supposedly to do with Easter, where large crosses were held and "Jesus be with you" shouted by extremist groups. Instead we will choose to live out the love of Jesus to those around us.

"What if the church was again known for being the people who love their cities and the people in them the most?"

Staying is the New Going

Happy Easter!