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AGTS News: Hausfeld leads Islamic Studies seminars in Cuba

HausfeldDr. Mark Hausfeld ('83), director of the AGTS Center for Islamic Studies and international director of the AG's Global Initiative: Reaching Muslim Peoples, lead a team of Global Initiative instructors to Cuba this past spring to participate in religious awareness seminars focused on Islam.

Cuban evangelical church leaders, lay members of numerous congregations and university students attended the seminars.  Dr. Jim Bennett, adjunct professor at AGTS, and Dr. Hausfeld presented topics related to the origins of Islam, its orthodox beliefs and practices, the role of Folk Islam in faith and culture and comparative theologies (Christian and Muslim). Lynda Hausfeld, Mark's wife, presented on the topic of Women in Islam.

Cubans who attended the seminars expressed gratitude for the teachings. Many affirmed that the seminar content challenged their personal perspectives of Muslims. They related that prior to the teachings they had felt animosity toward Muslims who had moved into their communities. Now they understand the importance of befriending and loving the neighbors God has given them.

These church leaders, lay workers and students have keen passion for their roles in the mission of God to all nations. As one young woman vowed in the presence of all attendees, “We are Cuban! You’ve had us from the beginning. Now, please train us for the privilege.”

Global Initiative and Assemblies of God educational overseers and leaders are dialoguing about the possibilities of a future presence in Cuba. The goal is for Islamic Studies to become part of the fellowship’s institutional religious curriculum.

The Center for Islamic Studies at AGTS and Global Initiative have been working together for years to provide quality training in Islamic Studies to those living along side Muslims in the U.S. and those called to reach Muslims around the world. The two will host the Summer Institute for Islamic Studies at AGTS in July 2013 featuring four courses on Islam and ministries to Muslim peoples. AGTS hosts the largest resident faculty in Islamic Studies of any seminary in the United States. The practitioner/scholar faculty of eight reflects more than 250 years of ministry among Muslim peoples globally, including in the United States. More information.

SIIS 2013

Updated: Thursday, June 20, 2013 12:05 PM

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