KDL Recommends > Staff Picks > March 2013

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The Faith Club: A Muslim, A Christian, A Jew-- Three Women Search for Understanding

The Faith Club: A Muslim, A Christian, A Jew-- Three Women Search for Understanding

ISBN: 074329047X

Title: The Faith Club: A Muslim, A Christian, A Jew-- Three Women Search for Understanding

Author: Ranya Idliby,Suzanne Oliver,Priscilla Warner

KDL Description:

RELIGION IDL

Traces how the three authors, American women who belong to three respective faiths, worked together to understand one another while identifying the connections between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, during which they openly discussed the issues that divided them and drew controversial opinions about their commonalities.

Recommended by Marlys at KDL’s Wyoming branch

Amazon Description: “Welcome to the Faith Club. We’re three mothers from three faiths—Islam, Christianity, and Judaism—who got together to write a picture book for our children that would highlight the connections between our religions. But no sooner had we started talking about our beliefs and how to explain them to our children than our differences led to misunderstandings. Our project nearly fell apart.”

After September 11th, Ranya Idliby, an American Muslim of Palestinian descent, faced constant questions about Islam, God, and death from her children, the only Muslims in their classrooms. Inspired by a story about Muhammad, Ranya reached out to two other mothers—a Christian and a Jew—to try to understand and answer these questions for her children. After just a few meetings, however, it became clear that the women themselves needed an honest and open environment where they could admit—and discuss—their concerns, stereotypes, and misunderstandings about one another. After hours of soul-searching about the issues that divided them, Ranya, Suzanne, and Priscilla grew close enough to discover and explore what united them.

The Faith Club is a memoir of spiritual reflections in three voices that will make readers feel as if they are eavesdropping on the authors’ private conversations, provocative discussions, and often controversial opinions and conclusions. The authors wrestle with the issues of anti-Semitism, prejudice against Muslims, and preconceptions of Christians at a time when fundamentalists dominate the public face of Christianity. They write beautifully and affectingly of their families, their losses and grief, their fears and hopes for themselves and their loved ones. And as the authors reveal their deepest beliefs, readers watch the blossoming of a profound interfaith friendship and the birth of a new way of relating to others.

In a final chapter, they provide detailed advice on how to start a faith club: the questions to ask, the books to read, and most important, the open-minded attitude to maintain in order to come through the experience with an enriched personal faith and understanding of others.

Pioneering, timely, and deeply thoughtful, The Faith Club’s caring message will resonate with people of all faiths.