IndiaPriest converts to Islam after meeting young woman; The priest listed...

Priest converts to Islam after meeting young woman; The priest listed the reasons


  • In the United States, a Catholic priest converted to Islam.
  • Priest Craig Victor Fender converted to Islam.
  • Fender said the rituals were influenced by Islam.

Washington: A Catholic priest has converted to Islam in the United States. Craig Victor Fender, a native of North Carolina, converted to Islam and adopted the name Ismail.

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Fender said his decision to convert to Islam was prompted by the influence of the life of Maulana Jalal Addin Muhammad Rumi, an Islamic scholar and poet. He said that Sufi dance, the rituals of Islam and the spiritual atmosphere of the ceremonies influenced his life. Born in 1955 in North Carolina, USA, Fender grew up in Los Angeles.

Despite converting to Islam, Fender said he grew up and studied as a Christian since childhood. “The family saw religion and related beliefs as very important. I went to church every Sunday. My grandmother wanted me to be a pastor. With this, I went to the seminary to study theology,” he said.

After becoming a priest, he took classes at universities in the United States, but his mental state was severe. Despite being a believer in God, the students of the seminary took classes but could not believe in the things they interacted with. With this he decided to leave the priesthood. And then went to California. Fender said he decided to study music and spend time with it, but he did not have the peace of mind to receive support from people.

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Fender said his life changed when he arrived in San Francisco in 2004 for a concert. It was here that he met Rumi’s 22nd generation granddaughter Esin Celebi Byru. Arrived in Konya, Turkey in December 2005 at the invitation of Byru. It was here that he learned about Islam and became fascinated with it. He added that he had converted to Islam in 2006.

He decided to follow Rumi’s path and move to Konya as he felt that Turkey was better than living in the US. He added that the decision was made to stay here permanently.

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