Oklahoma Muslims attending the second annual “Muslim Day at the Capitol” were greeted by both protesters and supporters as they entered the State Capitol building on Friday.

“Muslim Day,” hosted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations-Oklahoma chapter, was described as a day of workshops and sessions about civic engagement.

About 100 volunteers gathered by the Interfaith Alliance of Oklahoma formed what they called a “corridor of support” on the Capitol’s south steps. As Oklahoma Muslims walked between the volunteers, the supporters welcomed them and several escorted  individual groups of Muslims up to the building’s entrance.  The supporters sang songs like “We Shall Overcome.” Several groups of supporters stood in different areas of the Capitol parking lot to greet Muslims.

“We have so many supporters than protestors. Love wins,” said Rabbi Vered Harris, spiritual leader of Temple B’nai Israel.

Nyla Aziz, a Muslim woman from Oklahoma City, thanked the Rev. William Tabbernee, executive director of the Oklahoma Conference of Churches, as he walked with her to the capitol’s entrance.

“At first, I thought these were protesters,” she said, gesturing to the large gathering of interfaith supporters.

A Muslim couple, Dr. Kamran Abbas, a physician, and his wife Saima of Tulsa, said they appreciated the interfaith support.

“It’s amazing to see that,” said Kamran Abbas. “We’re here just to converse with our lawmakers and have them see that we are contributing members of society.”

Meanwhile, about eight people held up anti-Muslim signs and yelled out to Oklahoma Muslims as they entered the Capitol.

“It’s a command from God to believe in Jesus Christ. Do you believe that?” said David Grisham, a pastor from the Repent Amarillo street ministry in Amarillo, Texas.

Grisham and other protestors spoke both to Muslims and the group of supporters who gathered.

“Tell them this book, the Quran, is a filthy lie and this book is the truth,” Grisham said as he dropped a copy of the Quran, the Islamic holy book, on the pavement and held up a Bible.

Another protester, Ernie King of Kingfisher, sat in a wheelchair just outside a line of supporters.

“I want to tell all of these people, not just Muslims, that I love you enough to come out here in the cold and tell you the truth: the Bible clearly says Jesus is the only way to heaven.”

Imad Enchassi, senior imam of the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City, said he was impressed with the number of supporters who gathered and not surprised that there were protesters.

“We’re going to repel evil with good, hate with love,” he said.