DULUTH - Ibrahim Al-Qudah said his phone has been beeping like crazy in the wake of controversial comments made by Superior, Wis., Mayor Bruce Hagen before Christmas.

But instead of condemning Hagen, Al-Qudah, as president of the Islamic Center of the Twin Ports for Duluth and Superior, “decided to take a different route,” he said, and invited the mayor to dinner.

“He accepted,” Al-Qudah said Tuesday, meaning that Hagen will fly home from a family vacation to attend the community dinner Saturday at the center in Duluth.

“I fully intend to attend,” Hagen said in an email. “I look forward to a dialogue and clarification of the issues and also look forward to meeting the members of the Muslim community.”

On Dec. 21, Hagen responded on Facebook to a post that included a photograph of first lady Michelle Obama and wrote, “Unbelievable! She and her Muslim partner have destroyed the fabric of democracy that was so very hard fought for.”