Interfaith Respect Series #1: Islamic Center of America Imam Hassan Qazwini

Interfaith Respect Series #1: Islamic Center of America Imam Hassan Qazwini talks about his life during fall 2009 visit to Marquette, MI

Interfaith Respect has long been a goal of the Upper Peninsula EarthKeeper Team in northern Michigan.


Interfaith graphics by Justice St. Rain

On June 4, 2009 President Barack Obama said in Cairo, Egypt that people from different religions should respect each others faiths: The richness of religious diversity must be upheld … faith should bring us together.

In that spirit, the nonprofit Cedar Tree Institute in Marquette, MI begins a series of videos from a wide range of faiths.

These videos include Bahai, Jewish, Muslim, Zen Buddhist and Christian (Catholic, Lutheran, United Church of Christ and more.)


Interfaith graphics by Justice St. Rain


We start with three videos with well-know Muslim Imam Hassan Qazwini and followed by three videos of Dr. Michael Grossman, a member of Temple Beth Sholom, a Jewish Synagogue in Ishpeming, MI.

Imam Hassan Qazwini photos by Greg Peterson

Imam Hassan Qazwini, head of the Islamic Center of America, spoke on Oct. 22, 2008 at the Lutheran Campus Ministry (LCM) Lothlórien House in Marquette, MI.

Imam Qazwini talks about his life, the Iraq War and the treatment of women in Islam.

(See links below to two previous videos in which Imam Qazwini talks about respect for the environment and the few differences between the worlds major religions.)


Northern Michigan University (NMU) Health & Nutrition Professor Mohey Mowafy of Marquette introduced Imam Hassan Qazwini.

Dr. Grossman joined faith leaders from other religions in a April 23, 2009 address to NMU students.

The interfaith messages were deliver during the Sacred Planet series sponsored by the EarthKeeper NMU Student Team led by team leaders Sarah Swanson and Ben Scheelk.


Interfaith graphics by Justice St. Rain

Interfaith Respect videos will include:

Dr. Rodney H. Clarken, chair of the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahais of Marquette: Speaks about the history of the Bahai faiht, the environment and the EarthKeeper Initiative.

Head Priest Reverend Tesshin Paul Lehmberg of the Lake Superior Zendo, Soto Zen Buddhist temple, Marquette, MI: Speaks about the history of the Buddhist and Zen Buddhist faith, the environment and the EarthKeeper Tree Project.

Lutheran Bishop Thomas A. Skrenes of the Northern Great Lakes Synod for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America: Speaks on the environment, interfaith projects and respect for each others faith.

Catholic EarthKeeper team member Kyra Fillmore, seedling distribution coordinator for the EarthKeeper Tree Project, held in connection with Earth Day 2009,  that saw the congregations of 100 churches and temples plant over 12,000 trees across the U.P. during May 2009:

Speaks about the Catholic faith, the environment and the tree project.

United Church of Christ Rev. Dr. George Cairns of Chesterton IN: Cairns speaks about what can be learned from the Earth-based Celtic religion: Speaks in May 2009 about Celtic Christianity and the environment from Union Community Church (UCC) in Valparaiso, IN. Dr. Cairns thanks to the congregation and its pastor, Rev. Dr. Gregory Augustus Jones,  M.Div., D. Min, adjunct assistant professor of theology at Valparaiso University .
Dr. Cairns is the co-founder of the nonprofit Turtle island Project, a research professor with the Chicago Theological Seminary and Theologian in Residence at the Union Community Church.

We will wrap up our interfaith series with music from the NMU Sacred Planet series: EarthKeeper volunteer Johnnie Bryant sang an original song and NMU student Emmanuel Shayo played the drums.

The EarthKeepers are an interfaith environment group involving over 150 churches and temples across northern Michigan.

The EarthKeeper Initiative is co-sponsored by the nonprofit Cedar Tree Institute, the nonprofit Superior Watershed Partnership, the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community and 10 faith communities: Catholic, Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, United Methodist Church, Unitarian Universalist, Baha’i, Jewish, Quakers (Religious Society of Friends) and Zen Buddhist.

The EarthKeepers have ties to several other faiths including the Evangelical Covenant Church and Japanese Soka Gakkai International (SGI) Buddhist Network.


Interfaith graphics by Justice St. Rain

U.S. President Barack Obama interfaith quotes from Cairo, Egypt on June 4, 2009:

“People in every country should be free to choose and live their faith based upon the persuasion of the mind, heart, and soul.”

“The richness of religious diversity must be upheld whether it is for Maronites in Lebanon or the Copts in Egypt.”

“And fault lines must be closed among Muslims as well, as the divisions between Sunni and Shia have led to tragic violence, particularly in Iraq.”

“Indeed, faith should bring us together.”

“That is why we are forging service projects in America that bring together Christians, Muslims, and Jews.”

“That is why we welcome efforts like Saudi Arabian King Abdullah’s Interfaith dialogue and Turkey’s leadership in the Alliance of Civilizations.
Around the world, we can turn dialogue into Interfaith service, so bridges between peoples lead to action whether it is combating malaria in Africa, or providing relief after a natural disaster.”

“I want to particularly say this to young people of every faith, in every country you, more than anyone, have the ability to remake this world.”

“The enduring faith of over a billion people is so much bigger than the narrow hatred of a few.”

“We should choose the right path, not just the easy path. There is also one rule that lies at the heart of every religion that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us.

This truth transcends nations and peoples a belief that isn’t new; that isn’t black or white or brown; that isn’t Christian, or Muslim or Jew.

It’s a belief that pulsed in the cradle of civilization, and that still beats in the heart of billions.

It’s a faith in other people, and it’s what brought me here today.”

“All of us have a responsibility to work for the day when the mothers of Israelis and Palestinians can see their children grow up without fear; when the Holy Land of three great faiths is the place of peace that God intended it to be; when Jerusalem is a secure and lasting home for Jews and Christians and Muslims, and a place for all of the children of Abraham to mingle peacefully together as in the story of Isra, when Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed (peace be upon them) joined in prayer.”

And because the EarthKeepers stand for the equal treatment of all – we include the Presidents remarks about respect for womens rights:

“The sixth issue that I want to address is women’s rights.”

“I know there is debate about this issue.
I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal, but I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality.
And it is no coincidence that countries where women are well-educated are far more likely to be prosperous.”

“Now let me be clear: issues of women’s equality are by no means simply an issue for Islam. In Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indonesia, we have seen Muslim-majority countries elect a woman to lead.”

“Meanwhile, the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life, and in countries around the world.”

“Our daughters can contribute just as much to society as our sons, and our common prosperity will be advanced by allowing all humanity men and women to reach their full potential.

I do not believe that women must make the same choices as men in order to be equal, and I respect those women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles.

But it should be their choice.”

“That is why the United States will partner with any Muslim-majority country to support expanded literacy for girls, and to help young women pursue employment through micro-financing that helps people live their dreams.”

Related Links:

U.P. EarthKeeper Team:

Non-profit Cedar Tree Institute

Superior Watershed Partnership

Lake Superior Interfaith Communication Network


Two previous excerpts from the Marquette talk by Imam Hassan Qazwini:

Religions, people have few differences:

Selfish humans abuse Earth:

Islamic Center of America, Detroit, MI:
Imam Hassan Qazwini

Lutheran Campus Ministry:

Lake Superior Interfaith:

Local Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Marquette:

Northern Great Lakes Synod, Marquette, MI (Bishop Thomas Skrenes):
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA):

United Methodist Church Marquette District Office (Supt. Grant R. Lobb):

Marquette Unitarian Universalist Congregation (MUUC):

Temple Beth Sholom, Ishpeming, MI:

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Marquette, MI (Bishop Alexander Sample):

Episcopal Diocese of Northern Michigan, Marquette, MI

Lake Superior Zendo, Soto Zen Buddhist Temple, Marquette, MI:
Buddhadharma MahaSangha News:
American Buddhist Network:
Buddhist Yahoo Darma Wellness Group:

Presbytery of Mackinac (Presbyterian):

Quakers Lake Superior Friends, Marquette, MI:


Celtic Christianity Today, founded by Rev. Dr. George Cairns:
Union Community Church in Valpraiso, IN:
Rev. Dr. Gregory Augustus Jones:

Interfaith graphics by Justice St. Rain (Bahá’í Community) of Interfaith Resources – Special Ideas website:

Call Justice St. Rain at Interfaith resources


E-mail Justice St. Rain

Interfaith Resources
P.O. Box 9
511 Diamond Rd
Heltonville IN

Stories on EarthKeeper projects:

EK Tree Planting final story:

EarthKeeper Column #6 by Catholic member Kyra Fillmore: Growing Faith
EarthKeeper Column #5 by co-founder Rev. Jon Magnuson: Seeds, Signs and Symbols
EarthKeeper Column #4 by Presbyterian member Jill Martin: The Giving Tree
EarthKeeper Column #3 by Carl Lindquist: Great Lakes Ripple Effect
EarthKeeper Column #2  Rev. Tesshin Paul Lehmberg:
EarthKeeper Column #1 by Rev. Jon Magnuson:

Some of the Earthkeeper stories over the years:
Lake Superior Magazine:
National Religion News:
Environment Magazine:
Environment News Service:
Interfaith Good News Daily newspaper: Faith-based Lake Superior benefit concert a big hit:
Earth Keeper Energy Summit:,122272.shtml
PR Web: Michigan Earth Day 2007 Project Nets Over Ton of Pharmaceuticals (has lots of photos on right side of page):
Michigan Earth Keepers: One person can make a difference:

2007 Earth Keeper Clean Sweep:

About yoopernewsman

I am a news reporter, writer and investigative journalist and began my career about 40 years ago as a young teenager in Augusta, GA after moving south during the middle of high school. I'm a news reporter, writer & investigative journalist specializing in street news, plus Indigenous, civil rights & environment reporting. Currently volunteer media advisor for numerous American Indian & environment related nonprofits that include the Navajo Lutheran Mission in Rock Point, AZ & its executive director Rev. Dr. Lynn Hubbard, the nonprofit Cedar Tree Institute (CTI) in Marquette, MI & its many projects founded by Rev. Jon Magnuson, Author Joy Ibsen of Trout Creek, MI, Celtic Christianity Today (CCT) founded by Rev. Dr. George Cairns, the Turtle Island Project founded by pastors Hubbard & Cairns. In its third summer, the CTI Zaagkii Wings & Seeds Project & its volunteers built a16-foot geodesic dome solar-powered greenhouse that was built in this summer at the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community (KBIC) in an effort to restore native species plants to northern Michigan. It's located at the tribe's Natural Resources Department north of L'Anse along Lake Superior. During the summer of 2010, Zaagkii Project teens built & painted 25 beautiful reliquaries that are boxes made from pine & cedar that are used to store seeds for planting & included samples of Native American medicine including sweetgrass, cedar, sage & tobacco. From April-June 2009, I promoted the EarthKeeper Tree Project that planted 12,000 trees across northern Michigan. Co-edited "Unafraid," the second book by Author Joy Ibsen of Trout Creek, MI that was printed in May 2009 based on her father's handwritten sermons she found in shoebox. I edited numerous videos for nonprofit CCT. Began career 35 years ago as teenager in Augusta, GA after moving south during middle of high school. I was co-coordinator of the 1986 original James Brown Appreciation Day in Augusta, GA, where the Godfather of Soul was always trashed by local media who didn't report anything positive about the music icon. Mr. Terence Dicks was the other co-coordinator & most recently served as chair of the Augusta Human Relations Commission and serves on the Georgia Clients Council. Mr. Brown taught us to "fight the good fight" by battling all forms of racism & evil while not uttering a bad word about those who try to block justice, respect, fairness & kindness to all. As a child, I lived in the Harbert, Michigan home built by late poet Carl Sandburg, where the legendary author penned some of his greatest works including his Chicago works & Lincoln papers. The four-story home had a sundeck on the top & a cool walk-in safe in the basement. The neighborhood (Birchwood) has numerous cottages used for other purposes by Sandburg like the milk house where they milked goats. My parents remodeled fourth floor of the home that stands atop the Lake Michigan sand dunes/bluffs. They found items that belonged to Mr. Sandburg concealed in the walls including prescription bottles with his name, reading glasses, & a small, thin metal stamp with his name. I've worked for dozens of newspapers & radio & TV stations in GA & MI. I'm volunteer media advisor for several interfaith environmental projects involving Native Americans across Upper Peninsula of MI including the Turtle Island Project, The Zaagkii Project, the Interfaith Earth Healing Initiative, EarthKeeper Initiative & the Manoomin (Wild Rice) Project. The Zaagkii Wings & Seeds Project restores bee & butterfly habitat to help pollination of plants following death of billions of bees. Keweenaw Bay Indian Community youth & Marquette teens built butterfly houses, planted/distributed 26,000 native plants to help pollinators. The Earth Healing Initiative assisted EPA Great Lakes 2008 Earth Day Challenge. EHI helped organize interfaith participation across eight states for the 100 plus recycling projects (April 2008) involving recycling millions of pounds of electronic waste & proper disposal of millions of pills/pharmaceuticals. EPA goals were exceeded by 500%. Under an EPA grant, EHI provided free media services for the cities/groups/tribes including videos & press releases. The EarthKeeper environment projects include an annual Earth Day Clean Sweep (2005-2007) at 24 free drop-off sites across a 400 mile area of northern Michigan that collected over 370 tons of household hazardous waste. The 2007 EarthKeeper Pharmaceutical Clean Sweep collected over one ton of drugs plus $500,000 in narcotics in only three hours. Some 2,000 residents participated & many brought in pharmaceuticals for their family, friends & neighbors. In 2006, 10,000 people dropped off over 320 tons of old/broken computers, cell phones & other electronic waste, all of which was recycled. In 2005, residents turned in 45 tons of household poisons & vehicle batteries. The Manoomin (Wild Rice) Project teaches teens to respect nature & themselves by having American Indian guides escort them to remote lakes & streams in northern Michigan to plant/care for wild rice. The teens test water quality to determine the best conditions for the once native grain to survive. The Turtle Island Project was co-founded in July 2007 by Rev. Lynn Hubbard of Rock Point, AR (Ex. Dir. of the Navajo Lutheran Mission) & Rev. Dr. George Cairns of Chesterton, IN, United Church of Christ minister & research professor for the Chicago Theological Seminary. TIP promotes respect for culture & heritage of indigenous peoples like American Indians. TIP is a platform for American Indians to be heard unedited by whites. Rev. Hubbard says whites don't have the knowledge or right to speak on behalf of Native Americans. I specialize in civil rights, outdoor, environmental, cops & courts reporting thanks to my late mentor Jay Mann (Jan Tillman Hutchens), an investigative reporter in Augusta, who lived by the books "Illusions" & "Jonathon Livingston Seagull." Love to fish, hunt, camp & skydive. Belong to Delta Chi national fraternity. I was active in Junior Achievement, band played cornet. With my dear friend, the Rev. Terence A. Dicks, we were the co-coordinators of the 1986 original James Brown Appreciation Day in Augusta, GA, where the Godfather of Soul was always trashed by the local media who found no reasons to print or report anything positive about the music icon. I am honored to help the human rights activist Terence Dicks - with some of his projects including the nonprofit Georgia Center for Children and Education - and the economic initiative he founded titled "Claiming A Street Named King." I am the volunteer media advisor for several environmental projects across Michigan's Upper Peninsula including EarthKeeper II - an Initiative of the nonprofit Cedar Tree Institute in Marquette, MI. EarthKeepers II is an Interfaith Energy Conservation and Community Garden Initiative across the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Goals: Restore Native Plants and Protect the Great Lakes from Toxins like Airborne Mercury in cooperation with the EPA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, U.S. Forest Service, 10 faith traditions and Native American tribes like the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community Previously known as the Earth Keeper Initiative - that project included many environmental projects including an annual Earth Day Clean sweep at two dozen free drop off sites across a 400 mile area of northern Michigan. The target of the 2007 Earth Keeper Pharmaceutical Clean Sweep are all kinds of medicines. In 2006, some 10,000 people dropped off over 320 tons of old/broken computers, cell phones and other electronic waste, all of which was recycled. In 2005, residents turned in 45 tons of household poisons and vehicle batteries. The Manoomin (Wild Rice) Project taught at-risk teens (just sentenced in juvenile court) to respect nature and themselves by having American Indian guides escort them to very remote lakes and streams in northern Michigan to plant and care for wild rice. The teens conducted water quality and other tests to determine the best conditions for the once native grain to survive. I have always specialized in civil rights, outdoor, environmental, cops and courts reporting thanks to my late mentor Jay Mann (Jan Tillman Hutchens), an investigative reporter in Augusta, who lived by the book "Illusions."
This entry was posted in 16th Century, Ahmed, air, Al Gore, American Indian, animals, Anthony Manousos, Arab, Arabic, atom, atom bomb, atomic bomb, Bahai, benedictine, Bibbia, birds, Bishop, Bishop James Kelsey, blue planet, bomb, book, carbon dioxide, Catholic, Cedar Tree Institute, Chicago, Christian, church, Cindy Spring, Clean Sweep, co2, college, congregation, cooperation, Coran, creek, culture, Curan, debate, Detroit, e-waste, Earth, Earth Healing Initiative, Earth Keeper, Earth Keeper Initiative, EarthKeeper, EarthKeepers, ecology, ecumenical, ELCA, electronic waste, energy reduction, environment, Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, EPA Great Lakes National Programs Office, Episcopal, essay, ethic, ethics, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, extinct, faith community, farm, fish, forest, GLNPO, global warming, Great Lakes, Great Lakes Radio, green, groundwater, heritage, HHW, household hazardous waste, human race, Imam, Imam Hassan Qazwini, interfaith, Iraq, Iraq war, Islam, Islamic, Islamic Center of America, Islamic Center of America Imam Hassan Qazwini, Jesuit Missionaries, Jewish, K. Lauren DeBoer, Kayak, Kayaking, Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, Koran, Kuran, Lake Huron, Lake Michigan, Lake Superior, Lake Superior Binational Forum, landfill, leaves, Los Alamos, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lutheran, Marquette, marsh, Michigan, Middle East, Mother Earth, Muslim, Native American, nature, New Mexico, NMU, NMU EK, non-profit, Northern Michigan University, Northern Michigan University EarthKeeper Student Team, nuclear bomb, Ojibwa, Ojibway, Ojibwe, oxygen, Pecos Benedictine Monastery, pharmaceutical, pharmaceuticals, pluralism, poem, pollute, pollution, pray, prejudice, Presbyterian, psycho-social, Qoran, Quakers, Quran, recycle, religion, Religious Society of Friends, retreat, Rev Jon Magnuson, river, Roman Catholic, Sangre de Christo Mountains, Shia, Shiite, Shiites, species extinction, spiritual ecology, Stanley Kunitz, stream, students, Sunni, Sunnis, Sunny 102, Superior Watershed Partnership, teenagers, teens, temple, tolerance, trees, tribe, tribes, Turtle Island, Turtle Island Project, U.P., UGN, Uncategorized, Union Theological Seminary, Unitarian Universalist, United Methodist Church, Upper Great Lakes News, Upper Peninsula, Upper Peninsula EarthKeepers, volunteer, water, watershed, WBKP, WBUP, wetlands, wilderness, wildlife, WKQS, WKQS Radio, world, youth, Zen Buddhist and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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