The Gainsville Florida Church which has recently put up a sign that stated "Islam is of the Devil", was approached by the Hamas supporters, the Council on American Islamic Relations, (CAIR). CAIR of course wanted the Church to take the sign down but the Church stayed strong and told them no. I applaud them.
Islamic advocate holds a meeting with Dove Outreach pastor over sign
Ramzy Kiliç was unable to persuade Terry Jones to take the sign down.
By Megan Rolland
An advocate for the Muslim community in Florida, during a one-on-one meeting Tuesday, was unable to persuade the senior pastor of Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville to remove a sign that reads "Islam is of the devil."
"I was pleased that at least he was making the bridge to meet with me," said Ramzy Kiliç, Tampa's executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. "It doesn't seem like (taking down the sign) is going to happen, and he didn't want to know more about Islam."
Kiliç met with Jones for about 25 minutes Tuesday at the Dove World Outreach Center, 5805 N.W. 37th St., which has a series of hand-painted signs that read in red "Islam is of the devil."
Senior Pastor Terry Jones was not available for an interview Tuesday.
Jones told The Sun at the beginning of the month that the sign was "an act of saying there is only one way, and that is actually what Christianity is about. It is about pointing the people in the right direction, and that right direction is Jesus and only Jesus."
Jones called the sign a "great act of love."
Kiliç said his concern isn't based on the fact that the sign is offensive to him personally, but rather the fear that it might galvanize a subset of the population to act violently against a Mosque or even worse a Muslim individual.
"I don't think (Terry Jones) had any intent to be hateful to Muslims, but I just think he sees the Bible as the only way to God," Kiliç said of Jones and the church.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, is a national non-profit organization that works on civil rights issues on behalf of Muslim Americans.
The center in Tampa received calls from concerned citizens in Gainesville and Kiliç said that prompted him to set up the meeting Tuesday to try to convince Jones to remove the sign.
Kiliç said that Jones demonstrated very little knowledge about Islam during the meeting.
Jones has an honorary doctorate in theology from the California Graduate School of Theology.
"A lot of the things he was raising were not even about Islam. They were about countries with Muslim majorities," Kiliç said. "Many Muslims come to America so they can practice Islam freely. I don't even consider Osama bin Laden a Muslim."
The faith of Islam believes that Jesus Christ was a prophet but not the son of God, a strong dividing point between Christianity's belief that Jesus Christ is the one true savior and the son of God.
And while the Bible focuses on the life and teachings of Jesus, the Quran, or holy book for Islam, is the revelation made by the prophet Muhammad.
Kiliç said these two teachings are not mutually exclusive and have much in common that can be reconciled with the same message that both Jesus and Muhammad preached of "one God and free will to accept God."
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