The first gathering was held in St Thomas’ church in the Haymarket, where Muslim students joined members of the congregation for lunch and discussion under the banner of the Christian-Muslim Forum.
University chaplain Rev Catherine Lack opened the proceedings with a welcome to the church and an introduction to Christianity, as well as her own faith.
Turki Abalala, President, Newcastle University Islamic Society, also spoke for a few minutes before the floor was opened to questions and discussion.
Some quite challenging issues were raised such as ‘What about the Trinity?’, ‘How do Muslims manage conflict in their community?’ and ‘What do Christians say about sex before marriage?’ as well as some more light-hearted questions.
The focus of this event, which was chaired by Daniel Edge, from the Christian-Muslim forum, was more on Christianity than on Islam, but this will be reversed at the return visit planned for October.
“The aim was to learn more about one another, to confirm our faiths’ commitment to peace and friendship, and to celebrate the continual process of engagement and dialogue that exists, as well as to have something to eat,” said Rev Lack. “All of these were achieved, and we are committed to continuing, and extending, the process.”
For more information about the Christian-Muslim Forum, contact Rev Lack by phone - 0191 222 6341 - or email.
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published on: 10th July 2010