Plu­ral­ist calls for di­a­logue af­ter mu­seum shoot­ing

The Dallas Morning News - - North Texas - By DIANNE SOLÍS

Car­roll­ton res­i­dent Mike Ghouse was hor­ri­fied when he heard last week that a se­cu­rity guard had been shot to death at the U.S. Holo­caust Memo­rial Mu­seum in Wash­ing­ton, D.C.

“I thought, ‘Why do peo­ple have hate?’ ” said Ghouse, who 15 years ago founded the Foun­da­tion for Plu­ral­ism. “That was my first re­sponse.”

The 57-year-old home­builder and prop­erty man­ager sees the tragedy as a way for peo­ple to dis­cuss their sep­a­rate faiths, to forge un­der­stand­ing and to defuse re­li­gious ten­sions. His foun­da­tion’s mis­sion is to em­brace the ec­u­meni­cal ways of the world.

“There is not a faith we haven’t cov­ered,” he says.

Ghouse is a Mus­lim who orig­i­nally em­i­grated from the Ban­ga­lore area of In­dia about 30 years ago.

“I will never claim my faith is su­pe­rior to oth­ers,” he said. “Ev­ery faith is beau­ti­ful to me. The in­abil­ity to ac­cept the dif­fer­ences of oth­ers causes con­flict.”

Ghouse is a fre­quent-flier in cy­berspace, and many of his com­men­taries on ec­u­meni­cal re­spect can be found at www.mikeg­, on Face­book and on Twit­ter. The mul­ti­lin­gual Ghouse also started talk shows on the ra­dio geared to­ward the di­as­pora from In­dia and Pak­istan. And when week­end wor­ship comes, Ghouse vis­its ser­vices at Mus­lim mosques, Hindu tem­ples, Jewish syn­a­gogues and Catholic churches.

His own daugh­ter was so swept up by her fa­ther’s plu­ral­ism that she be­came a Bap­tist.

Mike Ghouse dis­cusses in­ter­faith tol­er­ance and un­der­stand­ing on­line and on air.

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