- The Washington Times - Friday, May 6, 2016

Rima Fakih, believed to be the first Muslim woman to be crowned Miss USA, has reportedly converted to Christianity.

Ms. Fakih, a Lebanese-American who won Miss USA in 2010, converted last month in anticipation of her marriage to Wassim Salibi, a Christian music producer, Christian Today reported.

Canadian singer The Weeknd, who is managed by Mr. Salibi, is expected to perform at the couple’s wedding next week in Lebanon, Al Bawaba reported.

Ms. Fakih, 30, recently tweeted a verse from the Bible: “Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me,” she wrote.

On Monday, she tweeted a photo of herself with the hashtag #Blessed.

At the time of winning the Miss USA title, Ms. Fakih said, “I’d like to say I’m American first, and I am an Arab-American, I am Lebanese-American, and I am Muslim-American.”

But Ms. Fakih later said she never associated herself with just one religion. She attended Catholic school during her childhood and didn’t connect with her Muslim roots until college.

In a 2010 interview, she told Religion News Service: “We’re more of a spiritual family. Religion really doesn’t define me or my family. My family’s been very liberal, and we appreciate all different kinds of religions.

“We always had a Christmas tree, and every year we go the Radio City Christmas Show, and watch ‘The Miracle on 34th Street.’ But we celebrate some of the Islamic holidays as well,” she added. “When I went to the University of Michigan, because there’s more of a Muslim community, my dad wanted me to learn more about Islam.”

News of Ms. Fakih’s conversion was mostly embraced on social media.

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