Religious leaders want to hold an interfaith conference to help curb the trend of religious violence in Kenya. The leaders are hoping that the conference will create an interfaith dialoge that will promote understanding among Christians and Muslims. This comes in the wake of
10/7/2012 Kenya (Sabahi) – Christian and Muslim religious leaders say they want to hold an interfaith religious conference by the end of the year to promote understanding and help dispel negative and erroneous stereotypes.
Fifteen leaders from various Christian churches gathered in Wajir on September 26th to discuss public rhetoric about Islam and encourage a more respectful, positive dialogue with Muslims in the district.
The leaders, who are part of the Wajir Christians Fellowship, called the meeting in response to the controversial anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims”, which sparked violent protests in a number of Muslim-majority countries.
As a result of the meeting, Christians and Muslims plan to hold an interfaith conference, according to Pastor Eustus Nyagah of the East African Pentecostal Church in Wajir. The conference aims to bring people together to exchange views in a respectful manner and help dispel prejudices, he told Sabahi.
He said religious extremists on both sides should be judged individually and not be seen as a reflection of an entire faith. “Why should the larger community suffer because of the actions or rhetoric of one individual? That is the height of intolerance and we should not accept it,” he said.
“Muslims and Christians certainly hold stereotypes against each other,” Njue told Sabahi. “They are stains that we need to eradicate using religious defence.”
Njue condemned the movie and said hateful speech and actions are against Christian values and do not help communities foster good relations. “We do not want the larger Muslim community to think that a few individuals with extremist views represent or speak for the larger community,” he told Sabahi. “Christianity is based on the tenets of love.”