January 24, 2018
Thursday, March 14, 2013

Pope Francis 'a friend of the Islamic community'

Argentine Muslim, House for the Diffusion of Islam head, Sheij Mohsen Ali
Argentine Muslim, House for the Diffusion of Islam head, Sheij Mohsen Ali
Argentine Muslim, House for the Diffusion of Islam head, Sheij Mohsen Ali

Argentine Muslims have welcomed the election of Argentine cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio as the head of the Roman Cathoilic Churhc. In an interview with, Sheij Mohsen Ali and CIRA Secretary General Dr.Sumer Noufouri praised Pope Francis’s “pro-dialogue” nature.

“He always showed himself as a friend of the Islamic community. He visited the At-Tauhid Mosque (located) in the neighborhood of Floresta and the Arab-Argentine Ali Ibn Abi Talib School strengthening our relations”, the Director of the House for the Diffusion of Islam Sheik Mohsen Ali said and described a personal anecdote with the man that has now become “the Pope of the end of the world.”

“In Suipacha Street, at the headquarters of the Argentine Episcopacy, his humility drew my attention. I went there with Sheij Abdul Karim Paz. There was a small wicker chair and some soft armchairs. He took the little chair for himself and left us the comfortable armchairs,” the Sheij Mohsen Ali recalled now that Catholics around the world learn that their religious leader used to take the subway while being a Cardinal in Buenos Aires.

More sensitive issues, political arguments, also seem to prove the nature of the two times president of the Argentine Episcopal Conference. “By the time of the 2006 Lebanon War, I held an argument with one of his assistants. He received me and understood my position. He acted like a friend, not a personal friend because we did not have the time to deepen our relation, but he has been a friend," the Muslim leader affirmed.

Regarding the tensions between Pope Francis and the administration of President Cristina Fernández de Kircher, Sheij Mohsen Ali called for dialogue. “Everyone knows the position Bergoglio has about the government of Cristina, a model I support. Channels of dialogue must come up. As in life, we all have lights and shadows. I wish Francis becomes even better and shadows can dissipate”, one of the most renowned voices among Argentina’s Islamic community hoped for.

“With joy and expectation of strengthening dialogue between religions”, Secretary General of the Islamic Center of the Republic of Argentina (CIRA) Dr. Sumer Noufouri told to resume how news about Bergoglio’s appointment were received by the institution he presides.

Considering ties between the CIRA and now Pope Francis “excellent”, Dr. Noufouri explained that the one-decade relation has helped to build Christian-Muslim dialogue, something “really significant in the history of monotheistic relations in Argentina”. A “joint work”, CIRA head added, “that we have never given up on”.

Mario Jorge Bergoglio is a “respectful, pro-dialogue person who knows the Islam”, the CIRA Secretary General said and, just like Sheij Mohsen Ali. he chose an anecdote to picture the personality of the elected pontiff.

“When Bergoglio attended the CIRA to have lunch with the board, he told us that in Rome, when he talked about the relation he had with Muslims saying that he came to the CIRA and that we congratulated him on Christmas, they just could not believe it, it shocked them,” Dr. Noufouri said and affirmed that “Argentina is a model of dialogue and coexistence that, God willing, could be exported to the world.”

  • CommentComment
  • Increase font size Decrease font sizeSize
  • Email article
  • Print
  • Share
    1. Vote
    2. Not interesting Little interesting Interesting Very interesting Indispensable
Tags:  Jorge Bergoglio  pope  Francis I  Argentine  

  • Comment
  • Increase font size Decrease font size
  • mail
  • Print



    ámbito financiero    Docsalud    

Edition No. 5055 - This publication is a property of NEFIR S.A. -RNPI Nº 5343955 - Issn 1852 - 9224 - Te. 4349-1500 - San Juan 141 , (C1063ACY) CABA - Director Perdiodístico: Ricardo Daloia