HOW DO I JOIN MPV-ATLANTA?
To become a member of MPV-Atlanta, one simply participates in events (online and/or offline) and has your name as part of our email membership directory. Members voluntarily contribute to the fellowship according to their means, their talent and/or their time. Suggested yearly dues are $60 and help MPV-Atlanta pay for email marketing, office expenses and activities. Contact us for details.
WHAT WERE THE MOTIVATING FORCES BEHIND THE CREATION OF MPV-ATLANTA?
The founders of MPV-Atlanta felt the diversity of Islam was not being fully represented in their local mosques. They had discovered the issues of gender inequality, culture, language, race, and elitism had permeated the atmosphere and leadership of these places of worship. Consequently, they neither felt completely welcome nor free to worship in these spaces because of their understandings of how to approach Islamic worship. The founders wanted to organize a place that provided both a safe and open space of worship and discussion for Muslims and others who identified with the Islamic community, but who avoided mosques or did not go to mosques as often because of a feeling of the inability to practice their own understanding of Islam. They also hoped to develop a dynamic, diverse and inclusive faith community based on Islamic principles such as faith, fasting, pilgrimage, charity and prayer.
WHY DOESN’T MPV-ATLANTA HAVE AN IMAM, OR RELIGIOUS LEADER?
MPV-Atlanta respects a wide variety of Islamic interpretations, understandings, and perspectives. MPV-Atlanta is governed by a board of directors and, is counseled by a board of advisors and a board of scholars to maintain the mission and vision.
ARE MPV-ATLANTA MEETINGS OPEN TO PEOPLE OF OTHER FAITHS/PHILOSOPHIES?
Absolutely! At each of our meetings, we have people from several different faiths. Membership of MPV-Atlanta is not restricted to Muslims. MPV-Atlanta is a community founded on Islamic principles for people of all faiths. We have had people visit us from such diverse faiths and philosophies as Christianity, Atheism, Hinduism, Agnosticism and Unitarian Universalism. In addition, we have participated and continue to participate in various Interfaith events, which is one of MPV-Atlanta’s core values.
WHY DO YOU ALLOW [FILL IN THE BLANK GROUP] TO PARTICIPATE IN YOUR ACTIVITIES?
One of MPV-Atlanta’s core values states that “MPV-Atlanta believes that all people regardless of age, race, disability, sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, culture, language, social status, religious or philosophical affiliation, or education have the ability to be valuable contributory members to the fellowship.” MPV-Atlanta is both a welcoming and inclusive fellowship.
WHY IS MUSIC USED AT MPV-ATLANTA MEETINGS?
MPV-Atlanta believes music helps bring the group together, creates a sense of common experience and lifts the spirit of each person, in addition to allowing a moment of reflection following meaningful dialogue. The use of various media improves learning and critical thinking. Music has been important to a variety of Islamic perspectives throughout history. Music is also an important method of human expression. Encouraging music as a kind of self-expression is important to MPV-Atlanta. The inclusion of music is in keeping with the hope that each person will feel safe enough to express his/her views, even though there may be others in the group who might disagree. The mutual respect of opposing views is at the heart of MPV-Atlanta’s mission.
HOW HAS MPV-ATLANTA BEEN RECEIVED BY THE ISLAMIC COMMUNITY?
The Fellowship has been well received by the majority of the Islamic community. We have been contacted by supportive communities and individual Muslims not only in Georgia, but also in places like Illinois, Arizona, California, Washington D.C., Canada, France, Spain, Greece, Pakistan, India and Sweden. In fact, due to the enormously positive response from communities all over the world, the Board of Directors have been working with other leaders to develop the “International Muslim Action Network” (IMAN), an organization to unite these communities through information sharing, coordination and collaboration of events and resources.
IS MPV-ATLANTA PART OF ANOTHER ORGANIZATION?
MPV-Atlanta is a chapter of Muslims for Progressive Values.
Please visit Links for more information about some of the communities with which we have worked.