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Many Latino converts come from Catholic backgrounds and the similarities between Catholicism and Islam give them a sense of familiarity with their new religion.
However, some Latino Muslims had difficulty with the Church, believing in original sin, and in the Holy Trinity.
Most of what we know about the Latino Muslim population came from the latter half of the 20th century when more Hispanics and Latinos living in the United States began to reestablish and reconnect with their ties to Spanish-speakers in the Americas, particularly in regards to culture, ethnicity, and religion.
Islam in the United States has a unique context of shared self-discovery of historically marginalized groups like African Americans and Latinos, which make up a large proportion of the Muslim population in the U.
Latino Muslims can share in the fight for social justice and against institutional racism with African Americans, and can empathize with immigrant Muslims through the experience of having a racially fluid cultural identity.
However, like African American converts, Latino Muslims have experienced some tension with the growing immigrant Muslim community in the U. who "deem them inauthentic because they either lack Arabic language skills or they do not adhere to certain religious practices." In an effort to connect and integrate themselves with the Muslim community, many Latino converts will choose an Islamic name to go by.
Others also choose to convert because they are dating or married to someone who is Muslim.
For Muslims, this consists of acceptance in the belief of tawhid, which is Islamic monotheism, and a belief that Muhammad is a messenger of God.