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Dr. Adam Francisco and Hicham Chehab

Featured on Woman to Woman on April 03, 2010.

Adam S. Francisco graduated from Concordia University at Irvine, Calif. with a M.A. in theology in 2001. Afterwards, he moved to England where, in addition to pursuing further research in historical Christian theology, he studied Arabic and Islamic theology at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies. There, he earned both a M.St. in 2003 and D.Phil. in 2006 for his work in the history of Christian-Muslim relations at the University of Oxford. Dr. Francisco was also the Albin Salton Fellow at the University of London from 2004-2005. He then joined the History Department of Concordia College in Bronxville, N.Y., until his recent appointment as guest professor of Historical Theology at Concordia Theological Seminary where he teaches courses on Islam in the seminary's Ph.D. program. Dr. Francisco is a contributing scholar for Modern Reformation magazine; he recently published the monograph Martin Luther and Islam.

Hicham Chehab grew up in a world where bitter and twisted animosities strained relationships between Muslims and Christians. In fact, he experienced a physical attack when he was seven from a Christian. By age 13 he was recruited by an extremist Muslim group and later fought against Christians in the 1975 Civil War in Lebanon. He was preparing to become a Muslim preacher (Imam) when a car accident laid him up for a year. In 1980, in his first semester in college, Christian militia killed his brother. Chehab's response was to study by day. By night, however, he took out his revenge in attacks against Christians. It was during this time that he heard Christ's "Sermon on the Mount" in a college course of cultural studies, which brought him to faith. Later, he earned an M.A. in the history of the Arabs and did doctoral studies in the history of Islam. He finished his pastoral education at Concordia, Fort Wayne, Ind. At present he pastors Salam Arabic Church, the first Arabic Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod church planted near the city of Chicago. He is active as a missionary to Muslims living in Illinois.

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