Interfaith clergy say they cannot ignore visit by controversial pastor Terry Jones

DEARBORN, Mich. (WXYZ) - An interfaith group of religious leaders is calling for a prayer vigil during a controversial pastor's planned visit to the area.

The pastors and the imams represent 35 churches and mosques in metro Detroit. They are going to send a letter asking Reverend Terry Jones not to come to Dearborn. Known primarily for burning the Holy Quran, Jones plans to be in Dearborn on Good Friday, April 22. The Florida pastor has not threatened to burn a Quran or given details about his protest.

The religious leaders had planned to ignore him, but say they can no longer do that. Standing together as interfaith clergy Monday, they spoke out on how they plan to deal with Jones' visit.

"As a christian minister, silence for me would be consent. That's the reason why we are trying to be as vigilant and vocal on the issue as we possibly can," said Reverend Charles Williams II, from King Solomon Baptist Church.

Imam Steve Elturk added "When he burns the Quran he also burns Jesus. Jesus is revered in Islam and is mentioned many times in the Quran... even more than Mohammed."

The clergy members are calling for prayer vigils during the visit and urge their members and congregations not to be lured in to reacting to Reverend Jones.

The imams and pastors want to stress that they are not asking anyone to take part in any sort of counter protest.

They are getting together to decide how they will conduct the prayer vigils, at individual churches or mosques and whether they will be out of doors.
 

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