In Islam, an Imam is the leader of a religious devotional ceremony held in a mosque. Unlike priests, Imams are not ordained. They may be any male from the community, providing they are of trustworthy character and high social status. Larger mosques, however, often retain a regular, paid Imam.
Historically, the Imam also refers to charismatic leaders of the Shi’ite group. The term can also signify a prominent community leader, equal in status to a caliph, and usually a theologian.
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