First Gay Muslim Wedding Takes Place in the UK

First Gay Muslim Wedding Takes Place in the UK - Happy grooms Jahed Choudhury, 24, and Sean Rogan, 19, who have been dating for two years, tied the knot wearing traditional golden Sherwanis in a civil ceremony at Walsall registry office - MPC Journal by Hakim khatib

Happy grooms Jahed Choudhury, 24, and Sean Rogan, 19, who have been dating for two years, tied the knot wearing traditional golden Sherwanis in a civil ceremony at Walsall registry office – © Photo: The Cater

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A 24-year-old gay Muslim is believed to be the first of his faith to wed in a same-sex marriage in the UK

Jahed Choudhury, who was attacked over his sexuality in the past, grew up feeling ostracised by his community for being gay.

Awkwardly, in an attempt to “change” his sexual orientation, he was sent on a religious pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh, forced to change his social circle and even take medication.

Choudhury, from Darlaston, Walsall, says: “This is about showing people I don’t care. My family… think it’s a disease and can be cured, some of my family still call it a phase.

“I want to say to all people going through the same thing that’s it’s okay – we’re going to show the whole world that you can be gay and Muslim.”

While homosexuality remains a taboo for traditionalists, Chaudery is believed to be one of the few gay Muslims to be open about his sexual orientation.

Growing up in a traditional Muslim household, Choudhury recalls being the “black sheep” of the family. Exclusion of course doesn’t stop there. Choudhury still remembers how hard it was for him to be who he is at school. He recalls: “It went all over school, people would spit on me, empty the rubbish bins on me, call me pig and the Muslim people would shout ‘harum’ – which is a very nasty insult in my language.”

Their relationship was ignited when Sean met Choudhury crying on a bench in Darlaston, and according to Choudhury, Sean has stood by him since then. “I’d not long overdosed and I was crying on a bench and Sean came over and asked if I was okay.” - © Photo: The Cater

Their relationship was ignited when Sean met Choudhury crying on a bench in Darlaston, and according to Choudhury, Sean has stood by him since then. “I’d not long overdosed and I was crying on a bench and Sean came over and asked if I was okay.” – © Photo: The Cater

Even the mosque he had attended for 15 years no longer allowed him in. Choudhury felt so excluded from society that he attempted to take his own life. He says he has post-traumatic stress disorder, which makes it difficult for him to face people alone or work.

“I’d been viciously attacked by Muslim boys, my mosque told me non-Muslims were not allowed in.

“I tried killing myself and I then met Sean [his partner]. The housing association got us a house in a week and we’ve been living together ever since. I proposed on Sean’s birthday last June,” he adds.

Showing off their rings, the couple pose for the cameras - First Gay Muslim Wedding Takes Place in the UK - MPC Journal

Showing off their rings, the couple pose for the cameras – © Photo: The Cater

With Choudhury being an open-gay Muslim, he has significantly contributed to both the Muslim and LGBT communities. Perhaps their wedding would help more gay Muslims to come out to their families and friends.

Now married, the couple, who recently returned from their honeymoon in Spain, say they hope to show the world that “you can be gay and Muslim”.


Hakim Khatib

Hakim Khatib

Hakim Khatib studied political science of the Middle East, European Studies, journalism and linguistics. He has been lecturing at different German universities since 2011 on issues related to ideology and the interplay of power thereof in socio-political life, and religion and its relationship to contemporary politics in the regions of West Asia and North Africa, especially Egypt and Syria. He is also the editor-in-chief of the Mashreq Politics & Culture Journal (MPC Journal) since 2014 and has published over 100 articles in different languages, academic and otherwise, in a wide spectrum of on-line and printed newspapers, journals and think tanks. His current research focuses on Islam-inspired political ideologies such as Islamist extremism and Salafism, radicalisation, de-radicalisation processes in Germany as well as peace and conflict in the Middle East.
Hakim Khatib

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