The Pope & The Ayatollah

March 11, 2021


Biden Signs $1.9 Trillion Stimulus Bill into Law on U.S. Lockdown Anniversary; Facing Pressure, Biden Administration Scrambles to Shelter Migrant Children; Senate Confirms Michael Regan to Lead EPA; Senate Confirms Merrick Garland as Biden's Attorney General; Senate Confirms Ohio Rep. Marcia Fudge as HUD Secretary; House Passes Labor Rights Expansion, But Senate Chances Are Slim; Biden Establishes A Gender Policy Council Within The White House.  


 In This Issue 

  • The Pope Visits The Ayatollah
  • The American Rescue Plan is Signed into Law by President Biden
  • Asian Americans Experience 'Far More' Hate Incidents Than Numbers Indicate
  • Muslim Casting Agency Sets Out to Authenticate Representation In The Film Industry




"Let us continue to pray for Iraq and for the Middle East. Despite the destruction, in Iraq, the palm, the country's symbol, has continued to grow and bear fruit. So it is for fraternity: it does not make noise, but is fruitful and grows." — Pope Francis, after visiting Iraq earlier this month

The Pope Visits The Ayatollah

By: Mariya Ali, MPAC Policy Intern

For many Muslims, Iraq is seen as a beacon of spiritual enlightenment. Its religious and ancient sites, such as the biblical birthplace of Abraham, exist not too far from shrines dedicated to the family of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), an ode to the rich and multicultural history that’s been present in the region. When the Pope announced his trip to Iraq and his plans to visit the Grand Ayatollah, it was a symbolic moment. This is one of the most significant meetings of faith leaders amidst the backdrop of global tensions, hate crimes, and islamophobia, and it has the potential to be a new and positive starting point for a globally tolerant and pluralistic society. In a country where the Christian population is dwindling, this historic summit serves as an emblem of hope. Both the Pope and the Ayatollah have urged for peace and unity amongst all people and to embrace the diversity that exists in Iraq.

Read the full article


 Good to Know 

  • The American Rescue Plan Was Signed Into Law By President Biden. If You're The Owner Of A Restaurant That Qualifies As A Small Business, Here's What You Need To Know
  • Number Of Migrant Children In U.S. Border Facilities Soars Amid Growing Crisis
  • Asian Americans Experience 'Far More' Hate Incidents Than Numbers Indicate
  • U.S. Jobless Claims Ease As Hiring Picks Up
  • Biden Says Americans Will Be First To Get Vaccines; Any Surplus To Be Shared
  • Muslim Casting Agency Sets Out to Authenticate Representation In The Film Industry
  • How America’s Vaccine System Makes People With Health Problems Fight For A Place In Line
  • Switzerland Is Banning Muslims From Wearing A Niqab Or Burqa In Public



In its 29th year, the MPAC Annual Media Awards are proud to celebrate vital voices in entertainment committed to narratives of courage and conscience. These Actors, Writers, Producers, & Activists go boldly and intentionally beyond their roles, productions, and the big screen to amplify inclusion and social justice.

We cordially request your presence in celebrating achievements from Muslims and Muslim allies in entertainment on Saturday, March 20 at 5pm PT.






March 7, 1573 - Turkey & Venice sign peace treaty; March 7, 1971 - Egypt refuses to renew the Suez cease fire; March 7, 2005 - Mass protest outside the National Assembly of Kuwait building for women's voting rights in Kuwait; March 8, 1957 - Egypt reopens the Suez Canal after Israel withdraws from occupied Egyptian territory; March 8, 1964 - Malcolm X resigns from the Nation of Islam; March 8, 2004 - A new constitution is signed by Iraq's Governing Council after the invasion and occupation by American-led forces; March 9, 1962 - Egyptian President Nasser declares Gaza belongs to Palestinians; March 9, 2007 - DOJ internal audit finds the FBI acted illegally in its use of the Patriot Act to secretly obtain personal info about US citizens; March 10, 1982 - President Reagan proclaims economic sanctions against Libya; March 11, 1502 - Ismail I, founder of the Safavid dynasty, crowned Shah of Persia; March 11, 1917 - British forces occupy Baghdad, the capital of Mesopotamia, after Turkish forces evacuated; March 12, 1971 - Hafez al-Assad consolidates power in Syria by installing himself as President; March 12, 1977 - Egyptian President Anwar Sadat pledges to regain Arab territory from Israel; March 13, 624 - Muslims defeat Meccan army in their first battle, Battle of Badr.

March 7, 1774 - King George III charges colonists in Boston with attempting to injure British commerce, paving the way for the closing of the port to punish colonists for the Boston Tea Party; March 7, 1925 - American Negro Congress organizes; March 7, 1930 - NY Times agrees to capitalize the n in "Negro"; March 7, 1965 - Alabama state troopers attack 600 peaceful Black protesters, including future Congressman John Lewis, in Selma during "Bloody Sunday"; March 7, 1995 - NY becomes 38th state to have the death penalty; March 8, 1884 - Susan B. Anthony addresses U.S. House Judiciary Committee arguing for a constitutional amendment granting women the right to vote; March 8, 1945 - International Women's Day is first observed; March 8, 1945 - Phyllis M Daley is first black nurse sworn in as U.S. Navy ensign; March 8, 1999 - The Supreme Court of the United States upholds the murder convictions of Timothy McVeigh for the Oklahoma City bombing; March 9, 1966 - Andrew Brimmer becomes first black governor of Federal Reserve Board; March 9, 1841 - U.S. Supreme Court rules the kidnapped slaves from the Spanish schooner the Amistad are free; March 10, 1969 - James Earl Ray pleads guilty to the murder of Martin Luther King Jr.; March 11, 1850 - Women's Medical College of Pennsylvania opens, 2nd female medical school in the U.S.




Want to receive our future updates?

Sign up to receive our DC Weekly emails and never miss a beat!




View All


Help us continue our work with a quick
one-time or monthly donation.