REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, SEMARANG -- Imam Shamsi Ali, a prominent, moderate and Indonesian Muslim scholar, also known for promoting interfaith dialogues among Abrahamic religions in the United States, will give a lecture at Central Java Grand Mosque, Semarang, on July 11.
The presence of Imam Shamsi in Semarang is part of the cooperation between the Grand Mosque and Al-Hikmah Mosque in New York City, in terms of da'wah and mosque development.
"I intentionally invited Dr. Shamsi Ali to share his experiences in leading mosques in New York that makes him one of the leading world Islamic leaders," Central Java Grand Mosque's chairman Dr. Kiai Haji Noor Ahmad said here, Tuesday.
Imam Shamsi's upcoming lecture is expected to inspire the organizer of the Grand Mosque, which has been actively establishing international cooperation in religion and culture.
Imam Shamsi Ali not only acts as the director of Jamaica Muslim Center in Jamaica, Queens and New York City, but is also the organizer of various interfaith organizations, including the Tanenbaum Center, a Middle East Federation for Peace.
Born in Bulukumba, South Sumatera, 49 years ago, Shamsi is famously known as the face of moderate Islam in the western world, since the 9/11 terrorist attack in 2001.
He has received dozens of awards from various institutions in America and the world, including the Ellis Island Honor Award in 2009, the highest award given by the American government to immigrants who contribute significantly to the development of the United States.
In fact, for four consecutive years from 2009 to 2012, Imam Shamsi was selected as one of the 500 most influential Muslims in the world by Jordan Strategic Studies and Georgetown University.
In 2015, he also received the MUI Award from the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) in Bandung, West Java.
Recently, Imam Shamsi also spoke about the role of the diaspora in promoting diversity and tolerance around the world during the 4th Congress of Indonesian Diaspora in Jakarta.