While German politicians continue to argue whether Islam is part of Germany or not, German Muslims have for quite some time been making a contribution in many social spheres. But many institutions in Germany are still at the beginning of a process of intercultural opening. Claudia Mende reports
The political debate in Germany has masked the fact that Muslims have long been participating in many social spheres. They have been insisting on more participation in communities, schools, and social welfare institutions. A new generation of young and well-educated Muslims is confidently raising the issues that affect their community, just like their Christian and secular co-citizens.
A conference hosted by the Catholic Academy in Stuttgart together with two associations of the Gülen movement in Baden-Württemberg, “Süddialog” and “Begegnungen”, focused on Christian and Islamic initiatives in cooperative public welfare efforts.
“Building schools, not mosques”: In accordance with the theories of Fethullah Gülen, education is more important than religious instruction In recent years, the Catholic Academy in Stuttgart has gained a reputation for promoting constructive and open dialogue with Muslims. The participation of the “Süddialog“ and “Begegnungen” associations marked the first time an event was held with representatives of the Gülen movement. The movement, founded by the US-based Turkish intellectual Fethullah Gülen, remains controversial, yet it has primarily concentrated on the issues of education and dialogue.