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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Finance training

The Indianapolis-based Islamic Society of North America is training imams to adapt Islamic financial ethics to the U.S. economy.

Imams are asked about financial ethics more than any other topic, although it's the subject they're least qualified to discuss, said Abdullah Nana, an imam at the Islamic Center of Mill Valley, Calif.

For example, Islamic law requires that banks own a house before it is resold to a home-buyer. It also prohibits usury, which some interpret as "all interest" and others as "excessive interest."

In 2000, Islamic scholars from North America ruled that for Muslims in Western countries, the duty to be a responsible citizen and get a mortgage overrides Islamic prohibitions on interest.


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