Photo for Headline Surfer / Jamil Khader of Stetson University will be the featured speaker Saturday, Feb. 16 at 10 a.m. as the United Church of Christ in New Smyrna Beach concludes its Community Forum Series for 2012-2013.
NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- Jamil Khader will speak on the "Profile of Islam in America," touching on such subjects such as the view of Jesus in Islam, mistrust of Islam in Western nations, and possible avenues to dialogue between Christians and Muslims. Admission is free.
The 90-minute event will be held in the Community Hall of the United Church of Christ. An audience question and answer period will follow his talk. Khader teaches in the English Department at Stetson and chairs the Gender Studies Program. A Palestinian Arab from Israel, Khader completed his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English Literature at Haifa University, Israel, and his doctorate on a Fulbright scholarship at Penn State University.
The Stetson professor said that in his youth he was always fascinated by the Quran’s telling of the story of Jesus, or Issa as he is referred to in Arabic. He calls it his “favorite story,” describing it as “full of poetry, wonder, and magic.” Given the elevated place Jesus occupies in Islam, Khader said he came to the US expecting a reverence he did not find toward his own faith, and the Prophet Mohammad.