Christian-Muslim Relations

May 6, 2021

Ramadan Kareem!: Thoughts for Christians about Engaging Muslims this Ramadan

By Abed El Kareem Zien El Dien Muslims around the world are in the final week of Ramadan. Many Christians I know, and Evangelicals particularly, are not positively inclined toward Muslims. Islam and Muslims are widely demonized and essentialized in their eyes. But why and how can we care about […]
March 11, 2021

Rethinking Christian Mission Witness in the Middle East

By Mike Kuhn That strikethrough of the word “mission” in the title is intentional. I imagine that for most readers of this blog the word “mission” evokes positive connotations of self-sacrificial giving and heroic exploits of missionaries of a by-gone era. Early Protestant missionaries to the Middle East established schools, […]
January 14, 2021

That They Might See Your Christmas Trees: A Post-Christmas Reflection on Arab Christianity and the Challenge of Presence

By Nabil Habibi Dad comes home with a big box. The four of us children, two girls and two boys, stare with curiosity. Mom is grinning. Dad opens the box. It is a Christmas tree! In almost any other Christian house in the Middle East, and indeed many Muslim ones, […]
December 9, 2020

Talking Non-Christian Religious Experiences: Avoiding Compromise and Demonization for the Sake of the Good News and Social Peace

By Tim Brys A few years ago, I was left rather shaken when confronted with the fact that Christians are not the only ones to enjoy deeply meaningful religious experiences. Consider for example the following account that I read in William James’s classic work, The Varieties of Religious Experience. James […]
November 19, 2020

Seeking Truth in a Land of Lies: A Pathway to Peacebuilding and Reconciliation

By Martin Accad and Tim Brys We previously wrote that Lebanese society is defined by sectarianism. This marriage of religion and Middle Eastern tribalism leads most Lebanese to think and live according to the dictates of their sectarian (tribal) leaders, whether they be Sunni, Maronite, Druze, etc. The 15 years […]
October 14, 2020

Sectarianism: the unhappy marriage of tribal and religious identity in Lebanon

by Martin Accad and Tim Brys Whereas peacebuilding is generally viewed as a noble vocation, there are many who question the legitimacy and purpose of interfaith dialogue, notably in Evangelical circles. But what of places where religious belonging overlaps with sectarianism and where sectarianism represents the frontline of conflict? Lebanon […]
September 14, 2020

Christians and Muslims Praying Together: Compromise or a Sign of Hope?

By Tim Brys, Martin Accad and Brent Hamoud When COVID-19 hit Lebanon in February 2020 bringing the country to a near standstill, the team at the Institute of Middle East Studies was challenged to rethink its peacebuilding initiatives in light of new social-distancing realities. This was quite difficult for programs […]
April 30, 2020

Interfaith Solidarity this Ramadan

By Martin Accad My two young children (10 and 8) gathered around us a few days ago. My wife and I were going to have a heart-to-heart with them. Though we had so far decided to spare them the feelings of financial insecurity, we felt it was time to have […]