Chelsea residents plan Islam forum as part of Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration

Chelsea residents plan Islam forum as part of Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration

By: Lisa Allmendinger Staff

A group of about 10 to 15 Chelsea residents have been meeting since the summer to plan a forum on tolerance of religious diversity for Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Jan. 17 that will take place at the Chelsea District Library.

“Differences without Divisions: Islam in America,” will feature nationally recognized Islamic leaders who will provide a broad perspective at the 7-9 p.m. event.

Included topics are:

  • Contemporary issues for Muslims living in America.
  • A place for Muslims in the world today.
  • American media representations of Islam and its practitioners.
  • Islam and youth.
  • The role of women in Islam.
  • Islam and humanitarian service.
  • The future of Islam and its role in America and the world.

“Islam is practiced by roughly a quarter of the world’s population and is the majority religion in close to 50 countries,” said Micky Howe, who spoke at a recent Chelsea City Council meeting about the upcoming program.

The focus of the forum will be contemporary issues facing Muslims in America. Speakers include Imam Sayid Hassan Al-Qazwini, a scholar and religious leader at the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn; Najah Bazzy, a nurse specializing in transcultural health care and the executive director of Zaman International; and Dawud Walid, executive director of the Michigan Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations.

The forum will be moderated by David Crumm, a religion journalist and editor of ReadTheSpirit, an online magazine covering religion, spirituality and popular culture.

The presentations will be followed by questions and discussion with the speakers.

Also planned on Jan. 17 is a youth forum from 1-3 p.m. at the library led by students from the University of Michigan Muslim Student Association. Included is a feature film on being Muslim in America.

The Chelsea District Library is located at 221 S. Main St.

For more information about the youth or adult forums, contact Micky Howe at


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