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Sometimes it takes personal outreach — for a client who wanted to marry a fellow Somali, matchmaker Saman Quraeshi said she recently found herself texting friends around the country looking for entrées to Somali communities.Sitting around a table in the co-working space they sometimes rent in Tysons, the matchmakers take turns pulling profiles up on a projector screen. “She wants to be near the city because cities are fun. She pulled the woman’s profile up on the screen, showing a photograph of her smiling under an ancient archway.Mokhtarzada thinks the way to balance religious piety and modern sophistication is his app.“A lot of these Muslim women, they haven’t actually had a lot of deep, intimate interactions with males.Then another matchmaker suggested a 29-year-old in Dallas. Follow Acts of Faith on Twitter or sign up for our newsletter.“Ohhh, she’s actually a museum educator,” Ayaz gushed. With a few clicks, they’d soon be introduced to each other. Muslim camps are growing in the United States to help kids be “proud of who they are” Judge orders Texas man to marry girlfriend and write down Bible verses Skipping church?The 24-year-old is definitely interested, but she's also Muslim, and Islamic traditions for courtship and marriage often conflict with North American dating culture.

“People kind of double down on their identity when it’s under attack…. “I think what’s happened in light of what’s going on in the U. Some Muslims only approve of chaperoned dates; many believe in waiting for physical intimacy until after marriage.She credits a service focused on both compatibility and religiosity with making the perfect match for her. After her cousin got married to someone Beyond Chai matched him with, she joined the service a month and a half ago.“When you make a decision, I need to know where you’re coming from,” she said, explaining why she knew she wanted to marry a fellow Muslim. She trusts the Beyond Chai matchmakers, who are all in their 30s, more than the “aunties” of her parents’ generation.Matchmaker Abeer Ayaz, left; Beyond Chai co-founder and CEO Asad Ansari, center; and matchmaker Sadia Khan, right, discuss whom to set one of their matchmaking clients up with at a team meeting in Tysons.(Julie Zauzmer/The Washington Post) When Sumayyah Baig’s family and friends tried to set her up with eligible Muslim men she might marry, they focused on all sorts of attributes: the men’s professions, their family backgrounds, their ethnicity. All she wanted was a person she would click with, who would share her values. I just wanted them to have the same belief system,” she said."And there's the one hand where you're like, 'This is normal for me to want' …but you're also kind of expected to be removed from that." By "that," Smith-Elnaggar means falling in love, finding a life partner and getting married.This kind of creates a safe space to have closer interactions: basically a chat room on the app, with people they match with,” he said.“Religiously, there’s no good reason that people shouldn’t be going and meeting different people, especially because they aren’t getting physically involved necessarily.(The one group not included in either Minder or Beyond Chai: gay Muslims.) Most of their clients are young adults, though.They seek matches for them within their database of fellow clients, and they add as many non-clients to their database as possible, by asking people to provide their information at major Muslim conventions and partnering with other matchmaking services and Muslim organizations.


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