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October 2001
A Time for Unity

Joint Message from Roman Catholics and Muslims



Catholics and Muslims meet regularly as friends and religious partners in dialogue and engage together in many community projects. We are fully committed to one another as friends, believers, and citizens of this great land. We abhor all terrorist acts and hate crimes and implore all American citizens to refrain from sinking to the mentality and immorality of the perpetrators of the crimes on September 11th.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the American Muslim Council, the Islamic Circle of North America, the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim American Society and numerous Islamic centers and councils have co-sponsored dialogues on religious themes and we commit ourselves to the many noble goals of interreligious cooperation. We believe that the one God calls us to be peoples of peace. Nothing in our Holy Scriptures, nothing in our understanding of God’s revelation, nothing that is Christian or Islamic justifies the terrorist acts and disruption of millions of lives which we have witnessed. Together we condemn those actions as evil and diametrically opposed to true religion.

We urge all American citizens to unify during this national tragedy and encourage cooperation among all ethnic, cultural, racial, and religious groups constituting the mosaic of our society. We appeal to American citizens to come to the assistance of the countless victims of the attacks on September 11th and the victims of any crimes of hate in the aftermath of those awful events. We join in supporting our government in the pursuit of those who were responsible for these terrorist acts, always mindful of the moral imperative to act with restraint and respect for civilian lives. We appeal to law enforcement agencies and the general public to assist those who may be targets of hate crimes. We entreat Catholics and Muslims to join together and with all people of good will in services of prayer and community programs promoting peace.

Rev. Tod D. Brown, Bishop of Orange; Chairman, Bishops’ Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi, Director, Islamic Society of Orange County, Islamic Society of North America
Aly R. Abuzaakouk, Executive Director, American Muslim Council
Dr. Sayyid M. Syeed, Secretary General, Islamic Society of North America
Naeem Baig, Secretary General, Islamic Circle of North America
Imam W. D. Mohammed, Muslim American Society



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