"When I first arrived at the LGBT Muslim Retreat, I was a little apprehensive and unsure of myself. I only started coming out a few months prior to the retreat so I still had a great deal of anxiety and nervousness around being queer and Muslim.
"The LGBT Muslim Retreat was probably the most affirming experience I have had in my life, so far. I was a scholarship recipient and this was my first year as part of the retreat and I felt like I was finally able to be myself as a whole person. By “whole person”, I mean that I felt like all of my identities were represented equally and I did not feel like I belonged only in certain ways and not others.
The people I met, the plenaries and workshops I attended and the conversations I had were all part of a learning experience that was much needed for my personal growth and development. I learned about myself, as well as the larger Muslim community. The accepting and non-judgmental environment was something I had not experienced within my own community, which was truly refreshing.
I am hoping that next year’s retreat will be just as enlightening and affirming as this year was, and most likely even better."
- Sadaf Syed, Chicago, IL - 2012 Retreat Participant