The Ven. David Selzer is the Executive Archdeacon at the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa. He has served in congregations in Kentucky and New York, and as a Chaplain at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN. He taught Church History for several years at a seminary in New York. He has been long involved in interfaith relations, primarily with the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim faiths.
“I believe that he [Mr. Gülen] is a prophetic person, not only for Islam, but for the community of faith, clearly at a time when the rest of the world needs to hear prophetic voices. He is clear. He speaks out of a long tradition of faith. He also is part of the understanding of Islam and its history, so not deviant from that at all. And presents a face of Islam which is other-looking, rather than simply self-serving.”
“Given our common, current images of Islam, from a Western point of view, which is often seen as either jihadist in a negative perception, or is violent, what the Hizmet Movement does is to say that in Islam, back to its roots, is also a religion of peace. That’s a powerful antidote to a lot of what’s happening, and from the West, we often see the terrible things of Islam.”
“With the Hizmet Movement, it’s not a movement for us, in terms of a group of people who need to have the dialog because of necessity, but is having the dialog out of the sense of abundance and out of the purpose of movement. […] To find a movement like the Hizmet Movement, for whom that’s a major purpose, is an incredible gift.”
“What I saw from the Hizmet Movement was focusing more, not so much here (the head) in terms of practices, although that’s true, but it was clearly here, in the heart, that it was people who believed, who also cared. Cared enough to educate the young and provide scholarships for the young, which we saw in a couple of the schools that we visited. Cared enough to risk their own life and certainly time off from work to deal with disasters.”