(OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, 9/19/2019) – The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) will host Richard “Mac” McKinney on Friday, September 20 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, September 21 at 7 p.m. at Oklahoma City University and the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City respectively.

SEE: An Evening with Richard McKinney at Oklahoma City University
SEE: Family Night with Richard McKinney at the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City

After 25 years in the armed services and several tours in the Middle East, former Marine Richard “Mac” McKinney came back to the United States filled with rage toward Muslims. In what he viewed as a final mission for his country, McKinney planned to blow up the mosque in his Indiana hometown. Then a fateful trip to that mosque – where he was welcomed by the local Muslim community – changed the course of his life. Soon, McKinney became a Muslim himself and the leader of the mosque.

WATCH: “The Secret Life of Muslims”: An Education

“Hosting Richard McKinney this weekend and hearing him talk to our community is an exciting opportunity,” said CAIR-OK Community Outreach Director Natasha Saya. “We often hear anti-Muslim rhetoric and hatred against Muslims, and here we have a former Marine who held animosity toward Muslims but changed his perspective to the point that he now leads Muslims in prayer at a mosque himself. His story is remarkable and inspiring.”

SEE: From Islamophobic to Muslim Convert, Veteran Richard McKinney Once Planned to Bomb Mosque

“In the current political and social climate, it is absolutely necessary that we take time to get to know one another and the experiences that shape our lives and perspectives,” said CAIR-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani. “This is a unique opportunity to hear of one man’s journey from the depths of hatred to the light of compassion and mercy.”

CAIR Oklahoma is the state’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.