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We hope this website answers many of your questions.  If you have more, and need to contact us, please do get in touch!

In Person or by post

Our address is: MCSCI, Nazarene Theological College, Dene Road, Manchester M20 2GU.

Contact by phone

Call 0161 438 1926 – use extension 1935.

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Drop us a Direct Message or tweet aimed at @mcrsci.

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The work of MCSCI can only happen because of continued support from donors just like you! If you have been enlightened, inspired or educated by any of our work, perhaps you might consider donating to enable that work to continue.
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Friends of MCSCI

 

Perhaps you are able to give a regular amount each month, or maybe you would like to give the Centre a gift on your birthday or another date which is significant to you each year? You could even mark the Centre’s official birthday – as we launched on 3rd March 2014 – or our anniversary of registration as a Charitable organisation (18th September 2015).

 

A regular donation to the Centre would automatically make you part of our new “Friends of MCSCI” group, which helps us get to know you better and brings certain other benefits:

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We will regularly add features to our Friends’ benefits scheme – and Friends will be the first to know about them.

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If you have any questions about donations, such as how best to donate, or what your money will be used for, do contact us. Please do not give any financial or personal details using the “comments” form below, as your words will be published publicly. You can email us, view our phone number and other contact methods on our contact us page.

About MCSCI

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Early history

MCSCI was formed as a specialist centre at Nazarene Theological College [NTC] in September 2013, after several years when Rev Dr Dwight Swanson (Old Testament Scholar) and Rev Canon Phil Rawlings (lecturer-practitioner in Christian Engagement with Islam) had already been collaborating.

After an administrator’s post was added to the team, the official launch of the Manchester Centre for the Study of Christianity and Islam [MCSCI] took place on 3 March 2014.

The Centre has continued to host regular courses of study, both for “ordinary” Christians and Muslims, and for those studying for a university qualification through NTC. Examples of these include the Encountering the World of Islam course (held in Winter 2014-15), Joining the Family (launching in Spring 2016) and our Islam in Contemporary Britain unit.

Significant events

We have also organised several events which seek to inform people from a range of backgrounds, such as the “Hope for Muslims” day in Spring 2015, where David Garrison unpacked some of the changes that are happening in Muslim countries around the world – and our most significant event to date, our major conference in January 2016.

The conference heard from speakers who live in the UK, the Middle East and America about some of the issues affecting Muslims, Christians, those who choose to change their religious affiliation and those with none. You can hear and see some of the conference materials online now.

Our ongoing work

A voluntary Executive Director, Anne Davies, also joined the team in 2015 to assist with the conference and our continuing activities. In 2015, we also committed to a regular blog. From January 2016, Dr Swanson is writing an entry every fortnight during his Sabbatical period in the Middle East – where he has a different experience of the interplay between Christian and Muslim compared with in Manchester.

Our ongoing work includes regular Christian-Muslim dialogue groups, research into various aspects of both Christianity and Islam, and provision of a specialist bookstore. If you would like to know more about the work which we do, please contact us directly, or for regular updates join the MCSCI e-newsletter mailing list.

Charity status and funding

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In September 2015, after a lot of hard work, MCSCI became a registered charity. This enables us to reclaim the tax paid on donations to the centre through the GiftAid scheme.

If you are able and willing to support our work, do make a one-off donation, or contact us about joining the Friends of MCSCI scheme. The centre only exists thanks to the generosity of people like you.

Jerusalem: roadblocks, mental maps and the “Third Intifada”

An red ambulance being searched by soldiers in green uniform, behind concrete barriers
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Photo of a street with a car passing and a neo-Romanesque square church tower in the background

St George’s cathedral in Jerusalem.
Photo by Ron AlmogCC-BY

If you walk out the Damascus Gate of Jerusalem’s Old City, and go straight up Nablus Road (Derek Shechem in Hebrew)—past the Garden Tomb and the École Biblique on the right, the bus station, former US consulate and the British Council on the left, but not as far as St George’s Anglican Cathedral—within about 4 minutes you will come to the Jerusalem Church of the Nazarene.

Over the years I have brought groups of students to Israel for study trips. I speak to them about the ‘mental maps’ we bring with us to Israel, and how those maps determine what we see. Readers who have been to Israel on pilgrimage may recognise certain of the places mentioned above, but not others. Most likely not the Church of the Nazarene.

For most Christians the mental map is that of the time of Christ. Those who come on pilgrimage, or as part of studies, tend to look at the experience with that biblical map in mind as the focus is on the places where Jesus walked, or where Old Testament events took place. Orthodox believers move from church to church. It is possible to spend two weeks in Israel and live altogether in the past. For others the present reality will come as a shock—sprawling cities, traffic jams, and fast-food jostle alongside holy places crowded with the thousands of pilgrims all seeking the connection with the ancient stories and events.

In the interest of disclosure, I should declare the influences on my mental map of Israel.

An red ambulance being searched by soldiers in green uniform, behind concrete barriers

A Red Crescent Ambulance being searched at a checkpoint into Jerusalem.
Photo by JustinMcIntosh, CC-BY.

The first time I visited the Nazarene church on Nablus Road was in 1988 in the early days of the first Intifada, or Palestinian uprising. As I was leaving the Israeli security forces were just setting up a road-block on what was then the main road into Jerusalem from the north. The soldiers were calmly leafing through papers found in one of the cars. Traffic was backed up as far as could be seen. It was not clear to me then, nor is it even now, what purpose the roadblock served.

In 2004, I was living in the Old City during an earlier sabbatical, this time in the midst of the second Intifada. I was wakened one morning by the explosion of the Number 19 bus, packed with young people on their way to the university. Some of them may have been among the students—typical students—I watched getting on the buses to go home each evening. I could not understand then, nor do I now, what purpose the targeting of young people, Jew and Arab, served.

The first Intifada was characterised by youth throwing stones at soldiers with guns; the second by the emergence of Hamas, suicide bombings, and the Separation Wall.

Photo of a street market with city walls in the background

Old Jerusalem Street, with the Damascus Gate in background. Photo by James Emery. CC-BY.

It is 2016, and I am back in East Jerusalem, this time in pastoral support of the church. Last week a Palestinian youth attacked a Jewish youth outside the Damascus Gate—just 4 minutes’ walk from the church—with a knife, causing light injuries. According to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz this was the 33rd attack in Jerusalem alone in the past four months, in a phenomenon that the Israeli authorities are struggling to come to terms with. The incidents are most often knifings, and the attackers include young teenaged girls—not the normal terrorist suspects. They are clearly not coordinated or instigated by the ‘professionals’. But all are labelled ‘terrorists’.

This is being called the third Intifada.

Plaza with steps down to small gate in large city wall

The Damascus Gate in Jerusalem

This week three young men from the West Bank attacked security forces when stopped at the same point outside the Damascus Gate. One border police woman was killed. The three men were killed. They were found to have guns, knives, and pipe-bombs. This is feared to be the introduction of a new level of violence.

These events frame my experience of the Israel/Palestine. They have re-written my mental maps over the years. In the coming weeks I shall post observations on life in Jerusalem, and Christian/Muslim/Jewish relations from the perspective of life in Jerusalem, and three decades of engagement with the Church here. The emphasis will be on observation, and does not propose to have answers to the problems, but rather to seek understanding.

The challenge of life here is that one has to learn what mental maps the people one meets are travelling by. There are Israeli and Palestinian maps, for instance, that give different names to the same places and draw lines in different places. For many Europeans, particularly on the political left, the Palestinian map takes priority, and no legitimacy is given to other maps. For many Christians, usually evangelical and particularly Dispensationalist in eschatology, the Zionist map takes priority and there is no place for Palestinians in The Land.

These are maps that mark the political fault-line that exists in Israel/Palestine as well, and there are variations and fault-lines on each side. There are no simple solutions, and even discussing the problems is like walking through a minefield. Yet, many of the issues facing Israel and the Palestinians today are tied in with the complexities of the Middle East as a whole; and, with the challenges which the refugee crisis brings to the West. As such, the reflections on the situation here are not just about another place. They are part and parcel of the interconnectedness of East and West, Muslim and Christian, and Jew.

‘Evangelical Responses to Islamic Revival’: A Report on the MCSCI Conference

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Rev Canon Phil Rawlings welcoming people to the conference

The theme of this conference was decided upon some two years ago, in the early days of setting out the goals and activities of the MCSCI. Since then we have seen the sudden onset of ‘ISIS/Daesh’ into the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Syria, the kidnapping of hundreds of school girls by Boko Haram in Nigeria, deadly attacks in Paris and San Bernadino, and the migration of hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Middle East into Europe. The responses to these events range from more Western bombing of Syria and Iraq and fear of all Muslims as potential terrorists to a welcome reception of refugees and protection of mosques from attack. The topic for our discussion could not have been more timely.

We discussed the wording of the title for the conference at great length. The MCSCI’s focus is on equipping and encouraging Christians to engage with Muslims. In this we wish to serve the Church. As such, we could well have spoken of ‘Christian responses’ in order to encompass those of all theological and confessional standing. But, we purposely chose to speak of Evangelical responses. The reasons are two-fold: one, we are Evangelicals engaged in this endeavour; two, in much of the rhetoric of today Evangelicals are often among those most caught up in the rhetoric of fear of the ‘Other’.

Discussion Panel of various speakers. (l-r): Rev. Canon Phil Rawlings, Dr Martin Accad, Dr Randy Cloud, Dan Miller & Rev Gordon Hickson

The term ‘Islamic revival’ encompasses a great range of issues, and was intentionally ambiguous. It includes the awakenings of the so-called ‘Arab Spring’ of 2011; the coming to power of Islamist movements in places like Tunisia and Turkey; and the ‘fundamentalist’ military movements creating sectarian conflict in so many places far beyond the Arab world. It also encompasses a renewal in the sense of Muslim identity among young people in Europe. These find expression in greatly diverse ways, and violence is only one of the ways. What we are observing is a crisis in Islam, as it grapples with change within its own societies, and the challenges of how to live as a minority in non-Muslim societies; as well as with coping with the challenges of modernity and globalisation.

In the face of such an array of issues within Islam, there can be no single response by the Church, or by Christians. This conference had two objects: one was to try to grasp what is going on in the Muslim world; and for this we had invited speakers to inform us of what we cannot learn from public media. The second was to consider the range of ways Christians may express the love of Jesus to Muslims; and for this we invited people to tell us what is happening in the Church in various parts of the world.

The following is a summary of the presentations by the key-note speakers. Their full presentations can be found in audio on the website; text versions will become available as soon as possible, along with the presentations given in the seminars.

Photo of Dr Phil Lewis

Dr Phil Lewis

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Man stood at lectern speaking to people in seats

Dr Martin Accad giving his speech to the conference

One, the long-term implications of the refugee crisis. The active involvement of Christians with refugees will be needed for a long time beyond the initial enthusiasm of hospitality.

Two, the long-term implications of the annihilation of Christians in the Middle East. Daesh, in particular but not only, actively seeks to blot out Christianity. This comes as a direct response to Western intervention, often explicitly described as in defence of the Christians still there.

Three, the long-term implications of the place of youth in the conflicts, and their radicalisation. The Church needs to work for integration in our communities, offering an alternative and positive narrative to that of the Daesh recruiters.

 


 

Dr Salim Munayer

Dr Salim Munayer

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  • How do we deal with evil and violence?
  • How do we deal with the breakdown of nation-states and the chaos this creates?
  • What is the role of the Church towards the political powers who are responsible for the protection of their people, but do not do so?
  • Will the Church accept her role in the work of creation redemption as priests to the moral worldviews both of the West and of Islam?

 

Dr Michael Lodahl

Dr Michael Lodahl

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Firstly, regarding our uses of Scripture (both Christian and Muslim), we need to engage with them as a function of the faith community, and not as isolated individual interpretations.

Secondly, Lodahl considered the widely reported phenomenon of dreams as the means by which Muslims come to Christ in comparison to Wesley’s frequent comments on similar phenomena under his preaching ministry. Lodahl suggests that these phenomena cannot work alone, but must be complemented by the actions of followers of Christ to make the connection with Christ ‘flesh’ and complete.

Thirdly, Lodahl spoke of the witness of the Church to be found in the quality of our living together, as servant communities more than in doctrine or debate. That is the quality that brings people to say ‘See how they love each other.’

 


 

Dr Greg Livingstone

Dr Greg Livingstone

The conference turned in the closing sessions to the voices of practitioners. [insert page=’world-wide-picture-believers-muslim-background’ display=’excerpt-only’] Britain may well be the hardest place for Muslims to become believers, but we need to remember that in places where we hear of large numbers coming to Christ there has often been generations of witness that saw no such result. Time and faithfulness would seem to be the key. He suggested we pray that the Lord would send a Cornelius (Acts 10) or a Lydia (Acts 16) to our areas of service—trusting God to prepare the heart of the person of his calling. Finally, Livingstone also spoke of the role of the Church as a living and loving community of faith (a theme common to all speakers); in our divisions and carelessness we miss the opportunity for witness that is given us.

 


 

Gordon Hickson

Rev. Gordon Hickson

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What are the most important Evangelical responses to Islamic revival? There were two themes heard from virtually every speaker:

  1. The church must live its witness in every day life;
  2. Reach out with love to the Muslims around you, and pray in love for the Muslims in the midst of life and death crisis.

Hot Topics general info

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All “Hot Topics” events will start at 18:30 and finish at 20:30 unless otherwise advertised.

There will be tea, coffee and water available.

Each of these events is a forum for discussion, and will be linked together to form a series – initially with one event each month.

These events will normally take place on the first floor of the Emmanuel Centre at Nazarene Theological College. For directions and more information about the college, please see the NTC (event venue) page.

There is no formal charge – however, we do ask for a donation towards the running costs of the centre, and suggest £10 per session would be appropriate. Feel free to give more if you can afford to – and less if you cannot.
If you pay UK Income Tax or Capital Gains Tax, please also complete our Gift Aid form, so we can claim tax relief on your donation back from the government. This makes your donation worth more, at no extra cost to you!

Documents

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Islamic Revival Worldwide

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Photo of Dr Martin Accad

Martin Accad

The speech “Islamic Revival Worldwide” was given by Dr Martin Accad, who is a Lecturer at Arab Baptist Theological Seminary and Director of the Institute for Middle East Studies in Beirut.

This was the second speech at the MCSCI Conference in January 2016.

Listen to this speech

This is a recording of the speech, which has been edited for clarity and to remove questions (which could not be heard over the microphone).

Abstract: Islamic Revival Worldwide

Dr Accad writes:

The emergence of ISIS as a transnational group over the summer of 2014, and the developments since then, significantly stirs our understanding of the future of Islamic revivalism globally. In order to know what potential scenarios to expect in the years ahead and to plan adequately as we think about God’s mission in the world, we need to understand both the most significant current dimensions of ISIS, as well as some of the historical background of where we find ourselves today. The present lecture will begin with an exploration of both the geopolitical and the socio-religious dimensions of Islamic revivalism today. In a second step, we will look at the historical and theological backgrounds of a group like ISIS. Finally, we will look at the implications for the future, both for our understanding and practice.

When can I hear him?

Dr Accad is expected to bring the conference’s second speech, “Islamic Revival Worldwide”, on Thursday 7th January 2016 at approximately 7:30pm.

Please note that all times are given as-planned in good faith, but the schedule may be amended without notice if required.

Who is he?

Martin was born in Lebanon and grew up and lived there through the civil war (1975-1990). He undertook seminary studies at the Near East School of Theology in Beirut and then completed a Master’s degree (MPhil) and a PhD (DPhil) at the University of Oxford in the UK (1996-2001). Martin has been back in Lebanon since 2001, based at the Arab Baptist Theological Seminary. He directs ABTS’ Institute of Middle East Studies, which he founded in 2003, and teaches in the areas of Islam, Middle-Eastern Christianity and Christian-Muslim relations, both at ABTS and annually at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA. He is co-founder and “Senior Fellow on Middle East Program” of the Centre on Religion and Global Affairs. He describes his life vision as to bring about positive transformation in thinking and practice between Christians and Muslims in the Middle East and Beyond.

Publications

Martin has contributed many articles and chapters in international academic journals and publications, including “Just Peacemaking in Light of Global Challenges from Muslims” (in Petersen, Stassen and Norton, Formation for Life, Wipf & Stock Publishers, 2013); “Christian Attitudes toward Islam and Muslims: A Kerygmatic Approach” (in Reisacher, ed. Toward Respectful Understanding and Witness among Muslims, William Carey Library, Pasadena: 2012); “Mission at the Intersection of Religion and Empire” (IJFM 28:4, Winter 2011); “Loving Neighbor in Word and Deed: What Jesus Meant” (in Volf, bin Muhammad and Yarrington, eds. A Common Word, Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids: 2010). He is also currently working on a book on conflict and Christian-Muslim relations and theological dialogue. With a mixed Lebanese and Swiss parental heritage, he is at home in practically any culture and lives and works in Lebanon by choice and calling.

Martin blogs regularly at: IMESLebanon.wordpress.com.

On the politics of fear

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With the Paris attacks, the San Bernadino shootings, and the stabbing in the London underground, terror has taken to the streets of Western cities. The European response is an intensified bombing campaign in Syria. In the US Donald Trump has dominated reaction, with remarkable interventions by prominent dynastic Christian leaders Franklin Graham and Jerry Falwell Jr. The very nature of ‘terrorism’ is to create fear, and so it seems that the terrorists have succeeded. Must we live in fear?

With this post we wish to offer some measured observations with which to consider the events of the immediate past.

A main premise of action for us at MCSCI, if not the main premise, is that Jesus said, ‘Love your neighbour’, and that includes Muslims. For those who think of Muslims as the enemy, Jesus also said ‘Love your enemy’, so that fairly well covers everyone. This is the Christian starting point for evaluation of the events that face us, and the conflicting narratives that are offered in explanation. How does this play out amidst the politics and media of fear? By Jesus’ command we may judge the comments of such so-called Christian leaders as Falwell and Graham, who counsel Christians to arm themselves and call for the deportation of Muslims from the US.

I have four observations:

Firstly, the rise of Daesh is a development of a crisis within Islam. This is an intra-Muslim war, and there are hundreds of thousands more Muslims being killed by Daesh, Al Qaida, and the Syrian government, than non-Muslims. Ultimately, this is a crisis that the world of Islam has to resolve. Western military intervention serves only to complicate matters for the worse.

Secondly, Muslims who live in the West have almost unanimously come as a result of colonial links. Pakistanis and Bangladeshis were invited to the UK for their skills in textiles. Algerians arrived in France under their particular arrangements of colonial rights. Turks were invited to Germany because of a shortage of workers following the Second World War. The colonialists drew the lines of the current Arab states, now being redrawn by Daesh. As for America, a large number consist of those displaced by US military action since 9/11. In all these cases people choose to come to the West for the very peace, security, and freedom of worship that we value. Many of them could not remain in their own countries because of their association with the West.

And here is an important component of this migration: they all think they are coming to the Christian West. How do we greet them?

Sadly, usually with prejudice and racism and fear.

It is helpful to consider some simple statistics regarding Muslims in the West. France has the highest percentage of Muslims of European countries at nearly 10% (more on this later). In the UK the figure is 4%. In the US, no more than 2%, but possibly less. This makes the rhetoric of floods of refugees and the impending imposition of sharia law rather overblown. How can such a small population be viewed with such fear?

This leads, thirdly, to the new phenomenon of radicalisation of young Muslims. Again, this takes different forms in different countries. Direct comparisons are difficult to make, and not particularly helpful for discerning the American situation. The French problem is particularly deep-seated, with the relationship to Arab Muslims fraught by a lengthy and bloody war of independence in the 1960s, which echoes down to this day. The social and economic situation of Muslims in France is pronouncedly dire, with ghettoised communities, high youth unemployment (a consequence of the global financial crisis created by Western institutions), and a national doctrine of secularism that outlaws public expressions of religion. These factors, among others to be sure, have combined into a cocktail of disaffection, providing breeding ground for radicalisation. The British situation is less pronounced. A recent academic study (in distinction to a poll) indicated that only 0.03% of the Muslim population was sympathetic to the use of violence to promote their religion. That is a small percentage, even allowing for statistical margins of error, yet it could mean a couple thousand potential militants within the UK borders. This number is what worries the state security people. But it is irresponsible to suspect or accuse every Muslim, and the whole of Islam, of terrorism on the potential attitude of such a small number.

The study also identifies factors that may contribute to the readiness of a young person towards radicalisation: a major life crisis; mental health problems; previously aggressive behaviour; minor criminality. That is to say, religion is not necessarily the root cause, but the recruiters for Daesh look out for such people and offer a religious solution to life’s problems. Additionally, those who are radicalised tend to be young people who have not previously been religious, did not attend mosque, and thus had little religious education. They are ripe for fundamentalist and literalist interpretations of the Qur’an because they do not know what orthodox belief would say.

These young people, born in the UK, even third generation British, thinking of themselves as British, have experienced a crisis of identity in the post-9/11 years, for society at large insists that they are Pakistani, or Bangladeshi; ‘Other’. What Daesh has to offer is an identity—a strong Muslim identity. Islam is, indeed, about power and strength.

The San Bernadino attack introduces the phenomenon of radicalised American-born Muslims to the scene. The task ahead is to learn to what extent the young couple represent a wider tendency in the US. My suspicion is that the sources will be similar to the UK, and the motivation rising out of the consistent policy of bombing the countries they come from. Pakistan has borne the brunt of drone bombings and the high cost in citizen casualties. (This is not to condone or excuse, but to seek to understand the others’ point of view).

Which brings me, fourthly, to the question of how to view the San Bernadino massacre. The combination of mass-shootings and an Islamic motive is a uniquely American combination, in which the Islamic component should not silence discussion of the similarity with other multiple killings with assault weapons. I note that the discussion of the shooting followed the now-normal pattern in the media and politics—shock, calls for gun-control, calls for more guns, calls for prayer—but the discussion only turned to hysteria when it was determined that this was an Islamist attack.

There are two points to make here. The first is that the Trump/Falwell response, and the rising chorus of demands for registration or deportation, is a total collapse in the face of terror. The terrorists win.

The second point is to ask in what way this is to be defined as terrorism as distinct from the shooting in Colorado the week before, or Sandy Hook a year ago. We become more afraid when it is labelled as terrorism. Why are Americans not more afraid of white extremist right-wing men?

 

How shall we respond to those who seek to spread this terror? Let me close with a story. When I arrived in Manchester 34 years ago, I discovered that the community around the church I had come to serve included a significant South Asian minority. As I sought to learn how to minister in this community, it was explained to me that many had come to the UK from Uganda in the early 70s, having been expelled from there by Idi Amin. These people came to what they thought was a Christian country, and were interested to learn what that meant. They were met by racism and exclusion, even from the churches. The Church lost an opportunity to show these newcomers what it means to be Christian. By the time I arrived they had found ways of supporting each other in their own communities, parallel to and apart from interaction with the indigenous community around them. We, Christians, share responsibility for the atmosphere which leads to the circumstances we now face.

The Church in the US is not only replicating the mistake of the British Church, but is compounding it with the reaction of the past weeks.

There is an alternative way. For Christians who wish to show the love of Christ to those around them, who believe that Christ gave himself for the whole world, the alternative is to reach out in friendship, and in hospitality.

(I do believe the British Church has begun increasingly to put this in to practice.)

For those who wonder what you can do, I would encourage you to find out who the Muslims are in your community, to reach out to them, and to offer affirmation and safety by friendship and the love of Christ.

[Sources for statistics can be provided upon request.]

 

D D Swanson

 

Conference Schedule

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You can download the latest version of the schedule here: Daily schedule (web) – correct as of 11 December

While all effort will be made to avoid it, the organisers reserve the right to amend session timing, content and speakers if required.

Day 1 – Thursday 7th January

Photo of Dr Phil Lewis

Dr Phil Lewis

Morning

The conference will start on the morning of Thursday 7th January. After registration at 10am, there will be a short period of worship followed by our first keynote speech by Dr Phil Lewis.

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After that first speech, we break for lunch.

Afternoon

Thursday afternoon will be occupied with two sessions of seminar-style discussion groups. Delegates will be able to choose two issues to be part of discussions on (with some offered in both sessions). Discussion topics are planned as follows:

  • What is happening to Islam in the UK? (with Phil Lewis)
  • European Christian Response to Islam (with Gordon Hickson)
  • Making sense of Muslim groups (with Richard McCallum)
  • Christian use of the Qur’an (with Michael Lodahl)
  • Evangelism and the Muslim (with Dan Miller)
  • Believers of a Muslim Background (BMBs) and the Church (with Roxy Foulkes)
  • Churches’ response to Islam in Britain (with Richard McCallum)
  • What is happening to Islam Worldwide – trends and movements? (with Martin Accad)
  • Israel/Palestine today (with Salim Munayer)

The conference will then break for delegates to get an evening meal, visit exhibition stands and take part in networking, before reconvening for the evening speech.

Evening

Martin Accad

Dr Martin Accad

The evening will conclude with our second keynote speech, by Dr Martin Accad (Director, Institute of Middle East Studies at Arab Baptist Theological Seminary)

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Read more about Dr Accad and his speech “Islamic Revival Worldwide”.

The day is due to end at around 9pm.

Day 2 – Friday 8th January

Morning

Dr Salim Munayer

Dr Salim Munayer

Day two begins as on day one – with a time for worship together – but slightly earlier at 9am.

Immediately after this will be the third keynote speech of the conference, by Dr Salim Munayer.

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Read more about Dr Munayer and his speech, “Israel-Palestine and the Clash of Domination”.

Following a short coffee break, there will be another session of seminar-style discussion groups. Delegates will be able to choose one issue to be part of discussions on, with discussion topics planned as follows:

  • Dialogue as an evangelical response to Islam (with Martin Accad)
  • The work of reconciliation – is there any hope? (with Salim Munayer)
  • Crises in the Muslim communities? (with Roxy Foulkes)
  • Christian response to the Refugee crisis locally (with Dave Smith)
  • Contextualised communities of Believers from a Muslim Background (with Greg Livingstone)

Once these discussions are complete, we will break for lunch.

Afternoon

Dr Michael Lodahl

Dr Michael Lodahl

Immediately after lunch will be the fourth keynote speech of the conference, by Dr Michael Lodahl.

[insert page=’may-see-good-works-glorify-father-heaven-wesleyan-theology-evangelistic-engagement-muslim-people’ display=’excerpt-only’]

Read more about Dr Lodahl and his speech, “‘That They May See Your Good Works and Glorify Your Father in Heaven’: A Wesleyan Theology of Evangelistic Engagement with Muslim People”.

Following a short coffee break, there will be a final session of seminar-style discussion groups. Delegates will be able to choose one issue to be part of discussions on, with discussion topics planned as follows:

  • What is happening to Islam Worldwide – trends and movements? (with Martin Accad)
  • Abrahamic Faith in dialogue (with Michael Lodahl)
  • European Christian Response to Islam (with Gordon Hickson)
  • Christian response to the Refugee crisis locally (with Dave Smith)
  • Contextualised communities of Believers from a Muslim Background (with Greg Livingstone)

The conference will then break for delegates to get an evening meal, visit exhibition stands and take part in networking, before reconvening for the evening speech.

Evening

The evening will conclude with the fifth keynote speech of the conference, by Dr Greg Livingstone.

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Read more about Dr Livingstone and his speech, “A Worldwide picture of Believers from a Muslim Background”.

Day 3 – Saturday 9th January

Day three is a half-day, designed to aid those who have to be home in their own church setting on Sunday morning.

Morning

Gordon Hickson

Gordon Hickson

After morning worship at 9am, the final keynote speech of the conference will take place, by Gordon Hickson.

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Read more about Gordon and his speech, “Christian Responses to Islam in Europe”.

Following a short coffee break, there will be a final session to review the content of the conference, which will be anchored by Dr Dwight Swanson and Rev Canon Phil Rawlings, who are co-Directors of MCSCI.

Afternoon

Lunch will be provided at 1pm.

There are no further sessions planned; we hope this should allow those who need to travel some distance to get away without missing anything. However, delegates are welcome to stay and network over an extended lunch period.

View full schedule

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Conference booking window extended

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The MCSCI conference, Evangelical Responses to Islamic Revival, is now only 4 weeks away, and we are very pleased with the range of speakers and topics we are able to bring you.

We know that Christmas is taking over a lot of people’s thinking right now – so we have extended the booking window for our conference to make sure everyone who wants to be there can do so – but we cannot hold bookings open forever, so please do secure your space today.

Late Bookings

We still have some spaces for extra delegates, so please do book a place at our conference if you have not already done so! We will be accepting late bookings until at least Thursday 17th December – but book now to avoid possible disappointment.

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