CIOGC Chair Dr. Mohammed Kaiseruddin was invited to speak as one of three non-Christian community representatives at the Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago in celebration of the elevation of Archbishop Cupich to Cardinal Cupich. Dr. Kaiseruddin made the following statement:
“My holy book The Quran provides four keys to success.
وَالْعَصْر :إِنَّ الْإِنسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ
By the declining day, Lo! man is in a state of loss, Except those who believe (who has ever succeeded without the strength of his convictions) and do good works (to serve the Creator and benefit fellow humans), and exhort one another to truth and exhort one another to endurance (against any calamities that may befall).
Use of these keys of success is included in the mission of every faith leader.
Muslims of Chicago have been very fortunate to receive the friendship of Cardinal Cupich, as they did of his predecessors. A common voice of denunciation of Islamophobia has been powerful. How befitting it has been for the CIOGC to work with the Archdiocese of Chicago and the other faith communities to promote tolerance and respect in Greater Chicago. We promise Cardinal Cupich our prayers as he assumes the role of co-chair of the Catholic-Muslim National Dialogue. May God bestow on all of us the strength and conviction to work together to reject exclusion and to value diversity.”
Cardinal Cupich commented on the fears in society of immigrants and encouraged people to see the common struggles we face, regardless of ethnic or religious backgrounds:
“We come at life from different directions. Reflective of the diverse cultural language and faith origins which define Chicago as an immigrant city. This is not something to fear. This is not a weakness. This is our strength. This is our heritage. We also all walk at different paces with our own loads to carry. We have to be honest with each other. That life is not an even playing field for some. Especially with racism and bigotry, xenophobia and a fragile family structure and history, a lack of opportunity in education and the workplace hurt so man of our neighbors.”
Several Chicago Muslim leaders, including Dr. Shakir Moiduddin, Omar Kariem, Shahnawaz Khan, and representatives of W.D. Muhammad community attended.