Our evening at the Karimia Institute

Tonight we had the privilege to attend a dinner at Karimia Institute, the mosque of Imam Musharraf Hussain. The evening started out with a bunch of us girls crowding around the table getting excited about Diet Coke. Haha. We love our Diet Coke. We then sat down and started conversing with some of the other people who were there. Kennedy and I sparked up a conversation with a young man who is studying physics at the University of Nottingham. We talked about the differences between school in the U.S. and U.K. as well as what we were studying and what we hoped to do with it someday. Then dinner was served. We were asked politely if it’d be okay if we had the women sit at one table and the men at the other. We had rice, bread, spicy soup, and spicy chicken. (I of course did not have the chicken.) It was a delicious meal! After dinner we were welcomed in to watch the evening prayer. This was an all male prayer in a room apart from the eating room that had an altar in the front of it. The man up front chanted so beautifully that I literally had goosebumps. It was just so beautiful. It was also such an interesting thing to watch because so many of the little boys knew exactly what to do and seemed to really care about doing everything just right. After the prayer we all went back out in to the dining room and had some fruit, tea and candy. We chatted with some of the other girls at our table. Then Professor Johns was asked to give a little presentation on the Lutheran Church. He did a great job of expressing the fact that Christianity in America is so diverse and that even within the Lutheran Church it is very diverse. He also talked about some of the key beliefs that are pretty much the same throughout Christianity. Afterwards some of the Muslim students asked Johns as well as the rest of us some questions about the Lutheran Church, our own backgrounds and what we know about Islam. It was very interesting. From there we went into more of a general open discussion. It was so interesting. At one point we were even talking about how our religions have something to say about the cause of the current economic crisis and what we, as religious people, should do to better the situation. On the way back to the flat with Becca and Sarah we had a great conversation about our own beliefs, morality, religion and Islam. I left feeling like it really is this kind of experience that is making me grow as a person this year. This is the kind of experience that I could really only get in an amazing program like the Nottingham program, and that I’m sure will contribute greatly to the person I become. Cheers ladies and gent

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