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Duke Cancels Muslim Prayer Call Amidst Backlash, Safety Concerns

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By    |   Friday, 16 Jan 2015 02:51 PM

Duke University has nixed plans for a Muslim call to prayer to ring from the school’s chapel bell tower after receiving numerous complaints this week, The Associated Press reported.

When it was announced that the call to prayer would occur every Friday, the private Methodist university was contacted by numerous people, including alumni, with objections. Muslim students and faculty have been using a room in the chapel for their prayers for some time, but had not previously used the bell tower to sound the call to prayer.

"There was considerable traffic and conversation and even a little bit of confusion, both within the campus and certainly outside, about what Duke was doing," university spokesman Michael Schoenfeld told the AP. "The purposes and goals and even the facts had been so mischaracterized as to turn it into a divisive situation, not a unifying situation."

When the plan was first announced, Franklin Graham, son of Billy Graham, called on alumni to pull back their support of Duke University, according to CBS News.

"This notion that Islam is a peaceful religion is just not true," Graham told CBS News. "So for a chapel built for the most part with Methodist money, for the Methodist church, to be a house of worship at Duke University for the students of that university so that they could worship the God of the Bible. For that chapel now to allow Muslim’s prayers . . . I think I have a problem with that, and I think many other people have a problem with it."

Schoenfeld told CNN that some of the calls to the university after it made the announcement about a call to worship were "pretty loud and nasty."

"I think when you do these kind of things you like to think and you hope that it will be seen by others as you see them as enlightened ways to introduce diversity and the celebration of faith tradition, but unfortunately it doesn't happen the way you would like it," Schoenfeld told CNN.

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Duke University has nixed plans for a Muslim call to prayer to ring from the school’s chapel bell tower after receiving numerous complaints this week, The Associated Press reported.
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2015-51-16
Friday, 16 Jan 2015 02:51 PM
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