USA (MNN) — 09-11-2001 is a day everyone will remember as a day the United States was attacked. It was a day terrorism rocked the world causing many to begin a global fear of militant Islam.
Founder and president of the Crescent Project Fouad Masri says it shook him to the core. "In 1978, I was in high school, and five of my classmates talked about hijacking 10 planes over the United States; one of the places they wanted to target was the World Trade Center. So for me it shook me to the core that they got away with it."
It also affected him as a Christian. "It shows me again and again that we have a problem on this planet called sin," Masri said. "We have a problem that people are being raised to kill and hate and plan to kill others. As a Christian, it should heighten my responsibility to tell people about Jesus because Jesus is the only Savior."
Some Christians are afraid to share their faith with Muslims because many believe radical Muslims can't come to Christ. Masri disagrees. "Saul of Tarsus definitely was not winnable in the minds of many of the disciples of Jesus. It took a matter of faith for Ananias to talk to him about Christ. Saul became the Apostle Paul."
While this shook Christians, it also shook the faith of many Muslims. Many Muslims began asking a lot of questions. Masri says Christians need to start seeing them as Jesus sees them. "Whether they're militant or moderate, whether they're nominal Muslims or devout Muslims, this is our time to tell them about the beautiful teachings of Jesus and that He came to save them from their sin, too."
The difficulty is that many Christians have no idea where to begin. Crescent Project is holding an Oasis 2009 Conference to help. Masri says, "Christians need to talk to [Muslims] in a way that's respectful, in a way that's sensitive, in a way that's effective. Many times Christian communicate with Muslims that really becomes aggressive and offensive."
The conference hopes to change that. Featured guest speakers and breakout sessions will teach "how to build friendships, how to build bridges, how to communicate effectively, how to give somebody the Bible, and how to help Christians communicate in a way that's biblical and practical in communicating with their Muslim neighbor and friend."
The goal of the Crescent Project is to come alongside Christians and churches to reach Muslims in the United States and around the world.
The Oasis 2009 Conference will be held October 22 – October 24 at the Zionsville Fellowship Church in Indianapolis, Indiana. Masri is making a special offer to Mission Network News listeners. "If people come to the Web site and sign up and put Mission Network News in the 'special code' box, I will personally send them special resources they can use in their ministry to Muslims."
Early bird prices are $35 for students, $50 per person, or $90 for a couple. Groups of three or more also receive a discount and are eligible for group registration.
Masri says the bottom line is this: "We want to come alongside Christians and churches to reach the seven million Muslims in America. We think God brought them here for a reason, and that reason is to experience the love of Christ and the teachings of Jesus."