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In 1997, Poet, Author and Filmmaker Michael Wolfe hosted an Emmy-nominated ABC Friday Night News Special with Ted Koppel that gave American viewers a first-hand glimpse into the sacred Hajj.

More than two decades later, Mr. Wolfe reflects on that and subsequent journeys to Mecca and across Arabia.

7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Maghrib) | Friday, July 19 | Conference Room

Questions? events@mcceastbay.org

Join us for dinner! Dinner boxes for sale at MCC starting at 6:30 p.m. After Maghrib, we will have a frank discussion with our middle and high school students and their parents.

This event will be livestreamed at mcceastbay.org/livestream

This event is co-sponsored with Unity Productions Foundation. Watch the 1997 22-minute Nightline special here.

About Michael Wolfe:
A well-known, award-winning poet and writer, UPF co-founder Michael was publisher of Tombouctou Books, a small press that published poetry and avant garde prose, for fifteen years. Michael’s first books on Islam were “The Hadj, One Thousand Roads to Mecca,” and “Taking Back Islam: American Muslims Reclaim Their Faith” (editor), which won a 2003 Wilbur Award. On screen and behind the scenes, Michael has been involved with television since 1997, when he hosted a televised account of the Hajj from Mecca for Nightline, which was nominated for multiple awards. He holds a degree from Wesleyan University. Michael is co-executive producer of UPF films, President of UPF and co-director of MOST.

About The ABC Friday Night News Special With Ted Koppel:
The Hajj with Michael Wolfe was a 22-minute ABC Friday Night News Special With Ted Koppel that aired on April 18, 1997. It is one American-Muslim’s Pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia. cis one of the five pillars of Islam. This is a rare piece of pre-9/11 media that was made before all the fear and misunderstanding.

In this exclusive ABC News Nightline program reporter Michael Wolfe takes viewers on his 1997 second Hajj to Mecca. Of the millions of Muslim-Americans, Wolfe is a convert born the son of a Christian mother and a Jewish father. Wolfe describes the experience as life altering.

The Hadj, or sacred journey, is the pilgrimage to the house of God at Mecca that all Muslims are asked to make once in their lifetimes. One of the world’s longest-lived religious rites, having continued without break for fourteen hundred years, it is, like all things Islamic, shrouded in mystery for Westerners. In The Hadj, Michael Wolfe, an American who converted to Islam, tells his own journey as a pilgrim, and in doing so brings viewers close to the heart of what the pilgrimage means to a member of the religion that claims one-sixth of the world’s population. Not since Sir Richard Burton’s account of the pilgrimage to Mecca over one hundred years ago has a Westerner described the Hadj in such fascinating detail. Mr. Wolfe also wrote a book on the Hajj experience.