Advent-cum-Mawlid: church holds joint birthday celebration for Mohammed and Jesus

Mawlid (or Milad) is the Islamic festival commemorating the birthday of Mohammed. The only thing it has in common with Christmas is that it isn’t actually the day the celebrated baby was born. Yet All Saints Church in Kingtson upon Thames thinks there’s an interfaith syncretised opportunity to be found in holding a joint birthday celebration for both Mohammed and Jesus – so they put the flags out for both, rejoicing in both, eulogising both, solemnising both, glorifying both, honouring both:

mawlid advent

But note how this event is “Marking the birthday of Prophet Mohammed”, but not looking forward to the birthday of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Mohammed gets his prophethood, while Jesus gets neither his prophethood nor his priesthood; neither his kingship nor his messiahship. It’s the exalted Prophet Mohammed along with plain old Jesus, because to have added any of his claims to divinity would, of course, have alienated many Muslims (if they hadn’t already been alienated by the haramcelebration), which wouldn’t have been very interfaith or sensitively missional, would it?

 

 

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Dr Adrian Hilton
The Archbishop Cranmer blog was founded by Adrian Hilton on March 21st 2006, the 450th anniversary of Thomas Cranmer's martyrdom. It rapidly became one of the most popular political and highest-ranking religion blogs in the UK. It takes as its inspiration the words of Sir Humphrey Appleby: "It’s interesting," he observed, "that nowadays politicians want to talk about moral issues, and bishops want to talk politics." It is the fusion of the two in public life, and the necessity for a wider understanding of their complex symbiosis, which necessitates incisive and informed comment on what are often very sensitive issues. The blog adopts a Christian conservative and conservative Christian perspective contra the forces of relativism, liberalism, postmodernism and secularism. It lies in the Catholic and Reformed tradition, wrestling occasionally with those same theological and ecclesiastical tensions which have busied us for centuries, and probing those same societal stresses and strains which have been the hallmark of Christian civilisation for two millennia.

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