Muslims in North Texas Find Girl Scouts a ‘safe Place' for Celebrating Their Faith, Culture

RICHARDSON — When Troop 647 starts reciting the time-honored Girl Scout Promise, it is closely followed by another invocation, this time in Arabic.It is from the Fatiha — the sacred first chapter of the Muslim holy book, the Quran.These Scouts are part of the growing number of mosque-based troops sprouting across the nation. Although there are under 500 girls in all-Muslim troops in Northeast Texas, many more are among the 25,000 Scouts in integrated troops throughout the region’s 32 counties.Sharmina Zaidi of Plano, leader of Troop 647’s nearly 100 Scouts including Daisies, Brownies and Cadettes, said mosques are a good location for America’s Scouting tradition. “Every city has a mosque, so it’s practical as this is where the community meets and feels comfortable.”She points out that many incorrectly believe Scouting is based in Christianity. “It is actually a secular organization, which encourages the girls to take spiritual journeys through their own faith traditions, and as Muslims we feel very much at home,” she said.  Continue reading...

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