Pretending to be Anglican

The Muslims of Mercy have to pretend to be Anglican in order to fill the church when the Arch-Deacon arrives. They have to do this so that they can keep the Mosque running. They get lessons on singing hymns and are guided through the goings on in the church.

Some of the Muslims in my community would never do this. Much like Baber, they would find even the thought offensive. They would find other ways to save the Mosque. Then again, they would never have a Mosque in a church either.  

How would your community react if they were asked to “pretend” to be part of another religion?

Advertisements

20 Comments

Filed under Episode 6

20 responses to “Pretending to be Anglican

  1. NAJ

    There are things that we can tolerate with non-Muslims, but I’m sure this is NOT one of them.

    “To you be your Way, and to me mine” (QS 109: 6)

  2. Mona

    I don’t think the members at my mosque would have a problem with being located in a church, if there was no other alternative. After all, the first mosque was just a house, right? But it would probably be preferable to have a separate property…

    I can’t see a whole lot of people at my mosque – myself included – pretending to be Anglican/Christian to save a church, though. I’d like to believe they’d try to do something to help a church “going out of business” financially, but again, I can’t see that.

  3. Sara

    Angels do enter places where there are pictures of humans or animals.

  4. Sara

    Angels do not enter places where there are pictures of humans or animals

  5. Jim

    “Angels do not enter places where there are pictures of humans or animals”

    That’s in the Angel’s lastest contract, page 43, paragraph 5, subsection 2, right?

  6. rstd

    The way the vigor of the Muslim community was juxtaposed with the agedness of the Anglican community was a pretty revealing look into the state of religion in many Western societies today–except the US, which continues to become more “religious.”

    Also, the whole Mosque/Church arrangement is actually metaphorical of the situation of many immigrant Muslims in N. America. They may have the vigor but not yet the infrastructure or organizational skills of the established culture here.

    In my city we do have quite a few churches that have been bought and made into mosques (or Jewish temples) and even some mosques that were sold to Sikhs or Hindus. Historically, I know that Muslims and Jews have often shared prayer space, especially in North Africa and the Holy Land (e.g. Hebron), and sometimes Muslims and Christians too.

    As far as them pretending to be Anglican, obviously no one would do that. It was, though, a brilliant comedic device that opened up all these social and ethical issues.

  7. FZ

    Jim-You might want to take a look at this:

    http://muttaqun.com/pictures.html

    Some would argue that if the images are not used as idols, they would be acceptable.

  8. Jim

    FZ – I can only say that I was never taught to worship pictures or to pray to them. Pictures are simply non-verbal representations of an idea or a moment, or a message that someone is expressing, not something to be prayed to. I can pray to God in the presence of a picture with the absolute knowledge that I am praying to God, and not the picture. And I believe that God has enough confidence in me to know that I am praying to Him, as the picture is not God.

  9. Zaraf

    Jim, Islam isn’t just for an individual, but rather, Islam is for a society. And that society is not limited to just this generation, but for all times.

    You will find many things in Islam which seem very “restrictive” when there is a very easy individual solution, but people often fail to look past themselves.

    The example of alcohol comes to mind. Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) said “There is both benefit and harm in alcohol, but the harm outweights the benefit, so stay away from it.”

    Now, he didn’t deny that there is benefit in alcohol, but that the harm outweights the benefit. Now individually, someone might say “Well, I drink only a little so it is good for my health.” Well sure, maybe YOU can do it. But a society can’t. On the grand scale, alcohol WILL be abused, and will corrupt society…especially over time.

    Do you know how idol worship started? Prophet Noah (pbuh) had asked God to wipe out all the disbelievers on the face of the earth after around 900 years of preaching and gaining only 100 followers. After the flood, there were only believers left on the earth, and they continued civilization.

    Now among these believers over time, there were some very pious and righteous people. When they died, Satan came to the people and told them “Why don’t we erect statues of these pious people so that we don’t forget them?” They thought that was a good idea, so they did it. A few generations later, Satan came to the people and said “These were pious people, so why don’t you ask them to ask God to forgive you?” The people at that time thought it was a good idea and went with it. Another few generations later, Satan came to the people and said “You know how your ancestors used to ask favors of these statues? Asking is not enough, so you must worship them.” And there you have it, idol worship.

    Its not like the people of the first generation were worshipping the statues. If you asked to worship the statues, they would say “What are you, crazy? They’re just statues!”…but Satan takes his time, and slowly takes the people off the right course.

    Just a note; Satan wouldn’t have come to the people in a “demonic” form or anything. If he came in a physical form, it would be that of a human…but more likely, he would whisper these ideas into the hearts of people.

    So this whole long story I’ve narrated to you is a basis of why somethings are forbidden and avoided in Islam. The path to something evil is also forbidden…not just the evil itself. You can’t be a grape or wheat farmer with the intensions of using those to make alcohol. Technically YOU aren’t drinking any alcohol, but you are on the “path” of that evil. etc.

    The whole issue of pictures hanging in the house and statues and what not…they follow along the same lines as I have already explained. Look around the world and you’ll see some societies in which there is ancestrial worship. Look in Japan for example, and lots of people have mini “shrines” in their homes of deceased among their families, along with a picture of that person and burning candles, etc. And they go there and they ask their ancestors to bless them, and give them good luck, etc etc.

    Anyway, I’ve rambled on a lot, but remember that Islam isn’t just for the individual, but for the society.

  10. Jim

    If things are a matter of not performing an action because it might lead to something bad, then we should just crawl into holes and never come out.

    You and I both know, for instance, that tomorrow, there will be people who die because they are going to be involved in a car accident. But does that mean we should stop driving? What about tobacco, should that be banned?

    Someone could take your analogy about Satan, by the way, and just as easily and say that it was Satan who appeared in the form of an Angel before Muhammad and dicated to him the words that have become the basis of Islam, and that they are not God’s words. And then to seal the deal, he’d tell Muhammad, “You’re the last prophet. If anyone comes after you and says they’re a prophet, or that they change anything I’m saying, then he’s a liar.”, permanently shutting the door to any type of correction, at least not without causing great upheaval. As you say, Satan is patient, and it may have taken 1400 years, but look at how much conflict has been caused over people fighting in
    the name of what they believe is the will of God.

    (I’m not saying that this is what happened, merely that you can juxtapose that scenario into a lot of situations.)

    The one thing I respect is your right to your religion and my right to mine. I think in the end that we’ll find out that we’re all a little right and a little wrong.

  11. Zaraf

    “…it was Satan who appeared in the form of an Angel before Muhammad and dicated to him the words that have become the basis of Islam, and that they are not God’s words….”

    Ahhh, interesting you brought this up. I usually get this response when I ask Christians about their opinion about Muhammed (pbuh). But what none of them have been able to sufficiently answer yet is how does this make sense with their own religious doctine.

    Suppose what you said was true, then you mean to tell me that God sent a line of prophets to mankind, for some unknown purpose since all of them were tainted with the original sin and are damned to Hell cause of something they didn’t do. And then God sent Jesus Christ to die for their sins so now everyone is clean and is qualified to enter Heaven. But oh, whoops…God allowed Satan to come and start this HUGE movement called Islam which apparently brings with it lots of violence and hatred and killing and SIN. Hmmm…so is God going to send Jesus Christ back to die for our sins again? Or wait, can we just go to priests now and get our sins washed away? But that brings the question of how these priests have the authority to wash away sins…since don’t they have sins themselves? That would be hypocricy. But if you claim the priests are sinless, then how do you get around all of those child abuse alegations? Etc etc etc….

    We could go in circles with questions like these for a LONG time…but it all comes down to faith 🙂

    My only challenge to Christians who say that Christanity is from God and Islam was the work of Satan is….

    If the Bible is from God, and the Quran is from Satan…then why is the Quran superior to the Bible in every way, shape and form? The Bible has been found with holes and errors, etc many times, yet the Quran has yet to be disproven. Sure, some “claim” they’ve found contradictions in the Quran, but go and look at the context, and you will see otherwise. Those that claim the same of the Bible can’t back up that claim when you have context independent inaccuracies in the Bible.

    I don’t mean to be Bible bashing here, but if you’re going to claim that there is a possiblity that Satan started Islam, then I’m going to toss up the possibility that the same is true for Christanity 🙂

  12. Jim

    Note that I did not say that Satan started Islam, I was pointing out that many stories can be easily twisted. And your claim that the Quran is superior is subjective, because you believe that it is the message of God. I believe that the Bible was inspired by God, but not the literal word of God. Not to say that what is mentioned in the said in the bible did not occur. But rather that since it was put to paper by humans, and humans are not perfect, the Bible could not be perfect, and it doesn’t have to be perfect to still be true to still carry an overall message.

    To say that Satan could not have started Islam because God would never have allowed that to happen, does not take into account that we don’t know why God allows certain things to happen. God has allowed Satan to exist, since God is the all powerful creator of all, God could will Satan to not exist, but he doesn’t.

    You’re correct that this comes down to faith, and I don’t claim to understand why God does or allows the things that occur because I don’t believe that God can be fully understood by humans. In my opinion, ultimately, what God wants is for humans to love each other, and to love Him. And that there is more than one way to do this.

    As far as what your debate says, keep in mind that not all Christians believe that original sin means that non-Christians are damned to Hell. The story of the Transfiguration says that Jesus was seen with Moses and Elijah (who were not seen as being in Hell), and that God said “This is my beloved Son with whom I am well pleased.”

    In order for something to be sinful, I believe that the person committing it has to truly believe that the act is sinful, and still do it anyway.
    I think that it’s perfectly possible that a Christian and a Muslim could both die, appear before God, and God could say to the Christian that he was displeased with him because he didn’t attend church on Sundays. The Christian might ask God if he is displeased with the Muslim for not attending church on Sundays. The answer might very well be no, because the Muslim didn’t believe that what he was doing was against the will of God. Conversely, the Muslim could be told by God that he was displeased because the Muslim drank wine. The Muslim could reply, so did he, pointing to the Christian. And again, the answer might be that the Christian didn’t believe that what he was doing was wrong. What happens to both of them ultimately? Only God knows. I dont’ believe that what happens to us after this life, is entirely dependent on which religion we follow.

    To me, only truly evil people end up in what we term to be Hell. People who do what they believe is bad, knowing that it is bad and wanting to do it anyway.

  13. Aalia Canadian

    Asalaam alaikum ya Zaraf…Masha’Allah 3alek you made perfect sense:D

  14. Ned

    Doesn’t the question remain why did the the Muslims of Mercy have to pretend to be Anglican in order to fill the church?

    What I mean is why can’t Rev. McGee fill the church with Christian church goes?

    Is he just a poor excuse of a Reverend? Or does it say something larger about the current state of Christianity in Western society and if Christianity is in the decline, who or what is to blame?

  15. Ned you asked a very good question. I believe that Christianity is on a decline in the West because it is simply not being practiced in a great number of Christian churches.

    Christianity suffers from a lack of leadership. In this sitcom that poor leadership is represented by Rev. McGee. Can you think of a poorer excuse for a Reverend than him? Look at all the things he does with the intent it seems to just to infuriate the few church goers he has left. His gay “marriage” stunt being the worst case of this. One wonders if he even believes in what he says up in the pulpit each Sunday.

    But as lacking in leadership the Anglicans might be, the Episcopalians are much, much worst.

    Can one be a Christian and a Muslim at the same time? Well to most of us out there the question itself sounds STUPID. Of course you can’t be both at the same time.

    Well not according to Episcopalian Priest Ann Holmes Redding. She has just become a Muslim. She is still a Christian but she is now also a Muslim. She has has been suspended from her active priesthood but an Episcopalian Priest who owns the blog below will not reject the idea of Ann Holmes Redding being both a Christian and a Muslim.

    http://webandchurch.blogspot.com/2007/08/muslim-priest.html

    But at least he doesn’t think that Ann Holmes Redding should continue to be a leader in the Episcopalian church. That’s something, I guess.

    But the point is if you have Episcopalian leaders who aren’t strong enough in their own faith to say that you can’t be a Muslim and a Christian is there really any wonder why that denomination is on the decrease.

    There are segments of the Christian church that are on the increase, but they aren’t the limp hand faux-Christianity you get from the Anglican and Episcopalian “leaders”.

    Do do you find this whole being a Muslim AND a Christian concept as insane as I do?

    Let this Christian “leader” know your thoughts.

    http://webandchurch.blogspot.com/2007/08/muslim-priest.html

  16. Ned you asked a very good question. I believe that Christianity is on a decline in the West because it is simply not being practiced in a great number of Christian churches.

    Christianity suffers from a lack of leadership. In this sitcom that poor leadership is represented by Rev. McGee. Can you think of a poorer excuse for a Reverend than him? Look at all the things he does with the intent it seems to just to infuriate the few church goers he has left. His gay “marriage” stunt being the worst case of this. One wonders if he even believes in what he says up in the pulpit each Sunday.

    But as lacking in leadership the Anglicans might be, the Episcopalians are much, much worst.

    Can one be a Christian and a Muslim at the same time? Well to most of us out there the question itself sounds STUPID. Of course you can’t be both at the same time.

    Well not according to Episcopalian Priest Ann Holmes Redding. She has just become a Muslim. She is still a Christian but she is now also a Muslim. She has has been suspended from her active priesthood but another Episcopalian Priest will not reject the idea of Ann Holmes Redding being both a Christian and a Muslim.

    “…if someone finds a little bit of heaven in the arms of another faith as well, who am I to say it can’t happen?” so he says.

    But at least he doesn’t think that Ann Holmes Redding should continue to be a leader in the Episcopalian church. That’s something, I guess.

    But the point is if you have Episcopalian leaders who aren’t strong enough in their own faith to say that you can’t be a Muslim and a Christian is there really any wonder why that denomination is on the decrease.

    There are segments of the Christian church that are on the increase, but they aren’t the limp hand faux-Christianity you get from the Anglican and Episcopalian “leaders”.

    Do do you find this whole being a Muslim AND a Christian concept as insane as I do?

  17. Here is a good video about Ann Holmes Redding.



  18. Lucy

    TV shows like this one that only show weak Christians like the reverend don’t help the situation. The show is very biased against Christians. There should be a wider range of Christian characters.

    I also think that as for converts, they should have a Muslim convert to Christianity if they are going to show the converse.

  19. Lucy

    I’d ignore Zaraf as he is obviously anti-Christian. Instead prayer for his soul that he may find Jesus.

  20. (Pardon for coming in so late to this forum, but I have just found the show and am just up to this episode in catching up.) Allow me to preface these comments by stating that I am a 54 year old Christian, of the Southern Baptist denomination, and a licensed minister to families to boot. I am enjoying the show and I’m excited about the prospect of learning more about Muslims in daily life. Of course, I realize that the Muslims portrayed here are not entirely accurate, as is nothing portrayed on television, but I’m hoping for some insight!
    I do have some “insider” thoughts on this episode, if you’ll allow me. As I said, I’ve been Christian for over half a century and have lived in close contact with similar beings throughout. And yes, I’ve run across a few Christians – and Christian ministers – who are represented by the Anglican Arch-Deacon in this episode. HOWEVER, these are NOT the majority in Christian churches. And yes, there are subtle-to-huge variances within the Christian ranks. But like I said, 50 years, lots of experience… I was disturbed with the AD’s whole attitude of condescension toward a fellow minister (the church pastor), as well as, with his near-alcoholism and his greed (touching the full collection plate with joy and insisting on a “take” of the offering).
    Please understand that the average Christian is much like I imagine the average Muslim to be: loving God, revering the faith, respecting the religion, but living in the world realistically. Yes, some “Christians” (note the quotes) as they call themselves are just fakers and takers. But I hope to see the show develop some decent real Christian characters who will represent more real-life examples of us.
    We, by the way, respect Islam (when we take time to learn about it) and the devotion and love of God as felt by true Muslims. Our faiths share so very, very much – history, the Talmud/Old Testament, Jewish roots and prophets, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, … Jesus/Isa even! Ignorance, in my humble opinion, is what harms both our families. I hope this program can serve to quench fires of ignorance and bigotry by helping both faiths see our similarities.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s