Ah ecumenism. I have nothing against ecumenism per se and I I have nothing against reading the Koran as it might me instructive.
But I do have a problem with the false notion of ecumenism which focuses on what we have in common as if that is sufficient. Ecumenism is about respectfully making distinctions.
Modern ecumenists think that the point of ecumenism is to bridge the gaps between religions. Wrong. It is not about bridging the gaps, it is about explaining that there is a pillar of truth to which they should anchor, everything else is death. That is real love.
Kathleen K. Duff serves on the Diocese of Albany’s Commission for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs and she has written a piece at “On Faith” in which describes the beauty and wonder of the Koran, which she read during Ramadan “in solidarity with my Muslim sisters and brothers throughout the world.”
However, this Ramadan something at the core of my being was calling me to read the Quran in its entirety. And so my monthlong Ramadan journey began.
Each day and evening, the prayerful poetry in the Quran held me in a meditative mode of peace as I read without being aware of the passage of time.
When I finished reading a week before the end of the month, I felt as if the Quran was almost endless, reaching beyond the confines of my calendar days. I didn’t want to read the last page. I didn’t want to be finished.
The Quran inspired me, taught me and helped me to remember my essential holiness and how that holiness in the image of God should be reflected in the world.
So leaving aside all the untruth in it, it was beautiful.
After reading the Quran during Ramadan, I am again convinced that there are more commonalities between and among religions than there are differences that isolate and divide.
I am sure that will assuage your persecutors when being put to the sword as an infidel. “But I read the Koran and I liked it! Can’t we talk about our commonalities?”