William Collinge, Professor of Theology at Mount Saint Mary’s University, sharing his experience in Turkey during a trip with RumiForum:

William Collinge

My name is William Collinge and I teach Theology and some Philosophy from time to time at Mount Saint Mary’s University in Maryland. I was trying to say it is tough to be the eighth inline, I guess I am ninth now counting the Muezzin (laughs). Many of my reactions would be the same as with what other people have said. I have been delighted by the wonderful hospitality of the Turkish people. I just loved the conversations that have gone on within the group. We really do have a great group, great and diverse group. The trip will certainly change the way that I teach about this part of the world. I never really said much about Turkey because I didn’t understand it very well, and I still don’t, but I think I know a little more now. It certainly is going to be part of what I talk about the Muslim World..

I haven’t had a chance to teach Christian Antiquities in the last ten years or so, but if I ever get a chance to do it again before I become a Christian antiquity myself, (laughs), it certainly will make a great deal of difference that I now have been to the places that St Paul walked and preached. They have a different shape to me in my mind now than they used to have. One other thing is that I am just delighted to become acquainted; however minimally; with your wonderful language. I do hope that next time I see Adnan that I will not have to say him “Bilmiyorum Turkce!” (laughs). I was asked couple of questions while Muezzin was talking. May I answer them on tape or should I answer them separately?… I have been compiling a directory of those on the trip and I have got you all with your vital statistics. If you are not on please say so. Also since people have asked about it, I will send copies of my trip log to everyone, and if you don’t want it you can just delete it..