February 1 was #WorldHijabDay, an annual event now in its fifth year. WHD asks global citizens of all faiths to observe Hijab (head-covering) for a day in solidarity with Muslim women worldwide. The overall mission of WHD is to create a more peaceful world where global citizens respect each other. Particularly, WHD focuses on fighting bigotry, discrimination, and prejudice against Muslim women. This is most crucial in these times where Hijab is being banned in some countries while in other countries, Muslim women are being targeted and harassed verbally and physically
Our undergraduate students are very interested in interfaith work and relationships, so we invited some Muslim students to visit with us the Tuesday before WHD to tell us why the wear a hijab and what it means to them (or why they don’t wear a hijab as many Muslim women do not). We also spoke about the central parts of our faith and the Muslim students also wanted to make sure we new that wearing a hijab or not is not what makes a person muslim. It is a peripheral practice. Much more central is simply your personal relationship with God.
We ended the evening with a demonstration on how to put on the head scarf and they also suggested watching one of the many youtube videos demonstrating different ways to wear a hijab, as there are many! Please continue to pray for our Muslim students as they are particularly vulnerable to bigotry right now. And thank you God for the big hearts and minds of our college students!