Abraham Dialogue Institute

The Institute was created to facilitate dialogue between Abrahamic faiths, with special focus on dialogue between Jewish, Christian and Muslim relations in America as well as promoting interfaith dialogue between Muslim countries and America. Our symposiums welcome participation  of scholars and graduate students from US and other countries. Through the Abrahamic Dialogue Institute, We hope that other educational institutions in America and Abroad, especially in the Middle East, will open academic centers for interfaith dialogue and will join these efforts. We welcome religious and social studies professors and graduate students to join us as visiting scholars to study and research the interfaith work at the Hickey Center and the rest.

Upcoming programs: You are invited to register

Summer 2024, August 12-16

Social Justice in Islam: Readings from the Qur'an

Social Justice demands equal opportunities in economic, political, and social rights available to all irrespective of gender, race, class or religious affiliation. How does the Qur'an emphasizes equality and fairness for all individuals irrespective of religious affiliation, race or gender? In this week-long course, we will explore these concepts of justice and just society Islam.

When: August 12-16, 2024 (Monday-Friday evenings)

Time : 7-8:30PM Via Zoom

Registration Fee: $39.00 (Register here or please write check to Nazareth University, IIIT Chair and Hickey Center and mail it to Muhammad Shafiq, Nazareth University, 4245 East Ave., Rochester, NY 14618)

Speakers : Dr. Etin Anwar, Dr. Shalahuddin Kafrawi, and Dr. Muhammad Shafiq

Topics for discussion:

Monday, August 12, 2024, The concept of Justice in Islam and equal opportunities in the Qur'an

Tuesday, Aug.13, Wealth and Poverty in the Qur'an

Wednesday, Aug.14, Nature and Environment in the Qur'an

Thursday, Aug.15, Violence, non-violence and the defensive war concept in the Qur'an

Friday, Aug, 16, Race and Gender in the Qur'an

Reading materials and Zoom link will be emailed a few days before the classes.

Past programs

Summer 2022

Understanding Islam's Relations with other Religions

Online non-credit certificate course for teachers, religious leaders, businesses, nurses, and other professionals including public interested in understanding Islam's relations with other religions for peaceful co-existence and professional services.

When:  August 15-19,2022 (Monday-Friday, both days are included)

Time :   7-8:30PM Via Zoom, Registration Fee: $39.00

Speakers: Dr. Etin Anwar, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva

Dr. Shalahudin Kafrawi, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva

Dr. Muhammad Shafiq, Nazareth College


Islam is misunderstood religion in America. Many do not know that the Qur'an recognized other religions, called them people of the holy scriptures especially the Jewish Bible and the Christian New Testament are mentioned as sources of light and guidance.  --in progress


Monday, August 15,  The Qur'an Pluralistic Theology

Tuesday, Aug.16,      Prophets and Prophecy in the Qur'an

Wednesday, Aug. 17, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Moses in Islam

Thursday, Aug. 18,  Mary and Jesus and the concept of Messiah in Islam

Friday, Aug.19,      Freedom of Speech, Hateful Rhetoric and Morally Responsible Speech in Islam

   Summer Courses 2020:

1. Understanding Diversity of Streams and Sects in Islam


The multiplicity of socio-cultural backgrounds of Muslims exhibits different traditional practices across diverse ethnicities and cultures. The approaches to the Qur’an and understanding the Prophetic tradition varied even when the Prophet was alive, but his presence and authority kept the centrality of Islam’s unity and uniformity. Soon after his death, differences over theological, devotional, legal, social and political issues emerged dividing the community into various streams and sects in all spheres of human life. In this weeklong course, some topics of contemporary significance where Americans are most confused will be discussed.


  • July 27, Monday: The emergence of Shi`a and Sunni in early Islam and its relevance today (Dr. Etin Anwar)
  • July 28, Tuesday: The Sunni divergence: The Sunni, the Salafi, the Wahhabi , Al Qa`ida, the ISIS and the Taliban (Dr. Shalahudin Kafrawi)
  • July 29, Wednesday: The Shi`a Divergence: The Twelvers, Isma`ili,  Agha Khanis, Zaidis and the Druze  (Dr. Muhammad Shafiq)
  • July 30, Thursday, Some Revivalist “Heretical” Movements: Baha’i,  Ahmadiyya, the Nation of Islam in America (Dr. Muhammad Shafiq)
  • July 31, Friday: Woman and Gender (Dr. Etin Anwar)

Time: 2:30-4:00PM

Delivery Method: distance Learning via Zoom

Registration: email: cisd@naz.edu or mshafiq5@naz.edu

Registration fee: $29.00; scholarships are available.

Please write and mail your check to Nazareth University, Hickey Center & IIIT Chair, 4245 east Ave., Rochester, NY 14623



Dr. Etin Anwar is Professor of Religious Studies at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY.  She mostly writes on issues of gender and Feminism in Islam.

Dr. Shalahudin Kafrawi is Chair and Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY.  He teaches courses on Islam and is expert in Qur’anic exegesis.

Dr. Muhammad Shafiq is Professor & Executive Director of Hickey Center for Interfaith Studies and Dialogue and IIIT Interfaith Studies Chair, Nazareth University, Rochester NY.



Have Questions?

To obtain further information, please contact us by e-mail at interfaith@naz.edu.

Hickey Center for Interfaith Studies & Dialogue


Social Justice in Islam: Readings from the Qur'an