The Rockyview Alliance Church, which advertises “seeking, awaiting, soaking, and healing” on its website, is a member of the Christian Missionary Alliance (CMA). The CMA is known as a relatively orthodox denomination, founded in 1887 by A.B. Simpson. Simpson’s denomination (albeit they denied such a term) was closely associated at first with the Pentecostal and Foursquare movements, and you can still see this origin in their doctrinal statement which (by the way, otherwise is orthodox) says that the redemptive work of Christ includes bodily healing. The CMA has about 2000 churches in the United States and nearly 450 in Canada.
The church’s pastor, Shawn Vickar, told HuffPo Arabi that the church wanted to give Islamic immigrants a “beautiful evening” and a “taste of Ramadan.” This was the pastor’s way, he says, of “building bridges of love and understanding” with refugees.
At the holy meal – called an iftar – the church had a Syrian religious guru share the details and meanings behind the feast, and explain the basic tenets of Islam. The congregation, according to reports, then set up prayer rugs and prayed toward Mecca (not only the Muslims, but the members of the CMA church).
One Muslim attendee said, “It had never crossed my mind that a church would host an iftar for Muslims.”
Jesus is not available for comment due to being busy with his ongoing priestly intercession, but we believe he would probably second that notion (if it weren’t for the whole omniscient foreknowledge thing).
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