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RESOURCE CENTER AND ARCHIVES

Christian, Muslim at odds over school prayer roomcomment (0)

April 2, 2009


LAHORE, Pakistan — The Christian manager of a nursing school residence hall in Lahore, Pakistan, has been threatened by a Muslim colleague because she provided a prayer room for Christian students.

Purses Gulzereen, who also is a senior lecturer at the Children’s Hospital’s nursing school, opened a prayer room for 400 Muslim students in the women’s residence at the request of a Muslim resident physician, according to a statement released by the human rights group CLAAS. When 80 Christian students requested a prayer room of their own, Gulzereen accommodated them as well.

When the Muslim physician then complained the Christian prayer room was being used to convert the Muslim residents to Christianity, hospital administrators responded by closing the Christian prayer room. When the manager protested, administrators closed the Muslim prayer room as well.

The physician then told local newspapers Gulzereen had closed down a mosque and stopped Muslim students and staff from offering their prayers, CLAAS said. The physician began distributing Muslim literature to Christian students and inviting them to embrace Islam. When administrators ordered the doctor to stop such activities, Gulzereen began receiving threatening telephone calls from unidentified individuals and she turned to CLAAS for assistance.

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