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Christian teacher wears hijab in solidarity with Muslims in America, suspended
Thursday December 17, 2015 0:02 AM, Agencies

[Images: Facebook]

In yet another display of rampant anti-Muslim sentiments in the United States, a suburban Chicago professor has been suspended by her Evangelical Christian college after she posted a photo of her wearing hijab in solidarity with Muslims in America.

Dr. Larycia Hawkins, who is Christian and a professor at Wheaton College since 2007, posted photos of herself on Facebook and Twitter wearing the hijab.

"I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims, because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book. And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God", she said in her Facebook post, adding she loves her Muslim neighbor.

“I don't love my Muslim neighbor because s/he is American. I love my Muslim neighbor because s/he deserves love by virtue of her/his human dignity...” Hawkins said. “I invite all women into the narrative that is embodied, hijab-wearing solidarity with our Muslim sisters–for whatever reason.”

The post quickly gained attention, with dozens of women sending messages of support and responding with pictures of themselves also wearing hijabs, according to NBC CHicago.

A day later, students at the college began circulating "An Open Letter to Leaders in the Evangelical Community" published Friday by campus leaders that promoted Christians to treat and to speak about Muslims in loving and respectful ways, in an effort to put an end to the “ever-growing fear and hostility directed toward Muslims” in the wake of recent terror attacks.

By the time students returned to classes the following week, Hawkins was placed on administrative leave by the university.

In a Tuesday evening statement on Wheaton College’s website, a spokesperson explained the move, writing that it was what Hawkins said – not what she wore – that led to her suspension.

“In response to significant questions regarding the theological implications of statements that Associate Professor of Political Science Dr. Larycia Hawkins has made about the relationship of Christianity to Islam, Wheaton College has placed her on administrative leave, pending the full review to which she is entitled as a tenured faculty member", the statement said.

After sustained criticism from a number of evangelical Hawkins posted another social media update pointer to a 2011 Huffington Post article to bolster her claims.

"A holy kiss to you who disavow the idea that Muslims & Christians worship the same God: I love you," Hawkins wrote in a Facebook response to critics. "Peace & Respect."


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