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Learn about Islam:

an introductory level class about Islam and Muslims

in Menlo Park, CA



Five Saturdays, 9:30am-12:30pm: January 16, 30 / February 12, 27 / March 12, 2016


January 16 – Jennifer Bryson

Demographics of Muslims Today / Muhammad / God / Quran 


January 30 – Jennifer Bryson, Kate Bridges-Lyman

Hadith / Sects / Islam and Other Religions / Interpretation / Sharia


February 13 – Jennifer Bryson

History of Empires and Politics / Modernity / Violent Extremism 


February 27 – Rick Love

What the Bible can teach us about relations with our Muslim neighbors


March 12 – Muslim Guests

Q&A Panel / Discussions with Muslims in Small Groups

We will host about a dozen Muslims as our guests


There will be no homework for this class, but participants are strongly encourage to purchase and read:

The Koran for Dummies by Sohaib Sultan (Wiley, 2004).

The Qur'an (Oxford World's Classics), translated by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem (Oxford, 2008).


Also recommended:

Grace and Truth: Toward Christlike Relationships with Muslims by Rick Love (PCI, 2013)


The fee -- $20 for an individual or $30 for two members of the same family -- covers all five classes, including snacks and handouts.


On several Fridays during the class there will be opportunities for participants to visit mid-day Friday Prayer at local mosques. 


The class leader will be Linda Arrillaga. This course has been organized by members of Menlo Church from the Café Campus.


All Saturday classes will be held in the Café at Menlo Church, 700B Santa Cruz Ave. (behind Ace Hardware) Menlo Park, CA 94025.









Dr. Jennifer S. Bryson, a member of Menlo Church, has a Ph.D. in Arabic and Islamic studies form the Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at Yale University. She also has an M.A. from Yale and a B.A. from Stanford. For 7 years after 9/11 she did counter-terrorism work for the Dept. of Defense. Now she is Director of the Zephyr Institute in Palo Alto, teaches part-time as a Visiting Professor at the U.S. Army War College, and serves on the Board of Directors of Peace Catalyst International, a Christian NGO seeking to improve Christian-Muslim relations. Her research focuses on Muslim support for religious freedom. Links to her articles are here.

Kate Bridges-Lyman is Director of Development for the Islamic Networks Group in San Jose, CA. She holds an M.A. in Religious Studies from Stanford University and a B.A. in Comparative Religion from the University of Washington. She served in various capacities in Muslim Student Associations and worked as an academic tutor and associate of the Markaz Resource Center at Stanford University. Kate speaks four languages including Arabic and Urdu, and is passionate about serving the American Muslim community, education about religion, interfaith work, and Urdu poetry. 

Dr. Rick Love is a peacemaker, consultant on Christian-Muslim relations, ordained pastor, and certified mediator. He is President of Peace Catalyst International. Rick has a Th.M. in New Testament and a D.Min. in Urban Studies from Westminster Theological Seminary as well as an M.A. in Theology and a Ph.D. in Intercultural Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary. He has also conducted postdoctoral research in peacemaking at the Yale University Center for Faith and Culture. Rick has published four books and numerous articles on Christian-Muslim relations, including Grace and Truth: Toward Christlike Relationships with Muslims (2013) and Peace Catalyst: Resolving Conflicts in Our Families, Organizations, and Communities (2014). Find out more about Rick at

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