Australia’s First Openly Gay Imam Speaks Out

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Imam Nur Wahrsage, an Imam who runs a mosque in Australia has revealed that he is gay. Wahrsage is only of one two people in Australia who is a ‘hafiz’, a man who has memorised the Quran.  Wahrsage, who is originally from Somalia founded Marhaba – a support group for LGBT Muslims.

Imam Nur revealed his true sexual orientation in an interview with SBS2’s ,The Feed.  He says, “Reconciling spirituality with sexuality is a very difficult journey”.

The Imam who is married with a daughter revealed why he had kept his sexual orientation a secret. “The reason it is difficult for people to come out in the Muslim world is because the losses are too high, the risks are too great. The conservative school of thought in Islam to counter homosexuality, is to be killed and that is your repentance.”

“I’m not easily intimidated” says the Imam who came out to Patrick Abboud. The Imam hopes that his revelation will help young LGBT Muslims come out of the closet.

Abboud told the Star Observer, “With more education, more visibility and more people like Nur stepping forward it’s possible to effect change. That change needs to happen at home first – it’s the parents and families of those struggling that can actually save their kids so much pain, and by sharing stories like Nur’s I’m hoping we can open up the discussion within the community at large and create more support networks.”

According to Abboud, Australia’s Muslims remain widely homophobic. In many Islamic countries, being homosexual is expressly forbidden and in some nations, it carries the death penalty.

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