Tuesday, March 07, 2006

On Turkish Muslims and Christians

Crosswalk has posted a news brief that says "There is a huge rift between Muslims and Christians in Turkey, preceded by centuries of violence, enmity and antagonism. 'Turks don't like Christians.'"

Having recently been on a trip to Turkey sponsored by the Institute for Interfaith Dialog, I can honestly say that I saw no signs of enmity between Christians and Muslims during my visit. In fact, the numerous and varied personal contacts I had with people around the country were all very cordial. Religious differences were openly discussed in an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust.

There are extremists in all faiths and all societies who foster hate and distrust of those who differ with them. To whatever degree that there is truth in the Crosswalk brief, it demonstrates how important it is for both Christians and Muslims to support the efforts of groups like the Institute for Interfaith Dialog to foster mutual understanding and respect.

The picture above, taken by Cole Stephenson, was taken while our group visited a worship center at Belek near Antalya, Turkey that was built by Turkish truck drivers. A Jewish Temple, Islamic Mosque, and Christian Chapel all share a common courtyard. Below are a few of the pictures that I took at Belek.


Greek Shadow said...

That must have been a wonderful trip. Good to see visual proof that people of Faith can coexist.

kerim said...

seeing the faiths coexistence makes everyone happy and sanguine for future.

Cafer T. Yavuz said...

Totally agreed..