Michael Sinan who recently won the Mr Gay Denmark competition sees no contradiction between being gay and Muslim.
He’s not only a 34 year-old handsome man, but boasts a master degree in Turkish studies and has mission to help gay who are Muslims be more reconciled with their faith.
Speaking with the French LGBT Magazine TÃªtu, Sinan said he his interest in Islam started already in early childhood. He became Muslim at the young age of 10.
Ever since childhood he had many Danish-Turkish Muslim friends, and when he came out to his parents at the age of 17 and they both, he reported, were very supportive of him.
He defines himself as a modern Muslim, and there are many like him, he says, gay or straight. ‘There is no need to choose between my religion and sexuality,’ he told TÃªtu.
He has many Muslim straight and gay friends who he says are very accepting of his sexuality and were pleased he won the Mr Gay Denmark competition last month (16 August).
In an interview with the Muslim Homosexuals of Italy (MCI) organisation he stated: ‘We live in 2012 and there is every opportunity to live as a modern Muslim who is devoted to God.’
However, Sinan is also aware that this is not always easy for LGBT people to reconcile their faith and sexuality: ‘Unfortunately I also know gays from Muslim countries who turned their back on Islam. They are convinced that all religions, and especially Islam, hate gay people.’
He hopes that his case can set an example: that gay Muslims don’t have to choose between abandoning their faith or hiding and even be in conflict with their sexuality. That you can be proud of being gay and Muslim.
He told MCI: ‘I participated in the Mr Gay competition because I wanted to show to gay and straight people that gay Muslims exist, and that I am proud to be one of them. And furthermore that modern Muslims exist, even straight modern Muslims. I never had any problems about this issue, not even from my family.’
Speaking with Gay Star News, Ludovic-Mohamed Lutfi, who founded and chairs the French Gay Muslim association (H2MF) said: ‘I am personally very pleased to see a number of Human Rights and LGBT advocates, like Mr Gay Denmark, in their own personal way, their solidarity with the daily challenges of living as gay Muslim’.