Mosque If­tar brings the com­mu­nity to­gether


Harefield Gazette - - COMMUNITY NEWS -

AS part of this year’s Mosque If­tar, Hayes Mus­lim Cen­tre in West Lon­don, wel­comed mem­bers of the lo­cal com­mu­nity, in­clud­ing lo­cal MP and Shadow Chan­cel­lor John McDon­nell, to break the Ra­madan fast with mem­bers of its con­gre­ga­tion.

The Mosque If­tar ini­tia­tive, or­gan­ised by Faith As­so­ciates, take place each year in more than 100 mosques and Is­lamic Cen­tres around the UK.

The month-long ini­tia­tive helps to foster mu­tual un­der­stand­ing through dis­cus­sion, de­bate and dia­logue by invit­ing peo­ple of all faith and none to­gether to ex­pe­ri­ence the If­tar feast.

Faith As­so­ciates launched the Mosque If­tar ini­tia­tive in 2012 to en­cour­age Mus­lim com­mu­ni­ties to open their doors to their lo­cal com­mu­nity.

Since then, hun­dreds of mosques have par­tic­i­pated, and thou­sands of peo­ple have shared an If­tar to­gether.

The ini­tia­tive builds on Is­lamic teach­ings that en­cour­age mosques to be more than just places of wor­ship; they should be schools, com­mu­nity cen­tres, homeless shel­ters and more.

Tahir Awan, chair­man at Hayes Mus­lim Cen­tre, said: “We [Hayes Mus­lim Cen­tre] have been or­gan­is­ing if­tars ev­ery­day dur­ing Ra­madan for the com­mu­nity, in which have been reg­u­larly at­tended by over 400 peo­ple.

“We were pleased to have friends such as John McDon­nell MP at­tend our com­mu­nity If­tar this year, as he kindly does ev­ery Ra­madan, along with other faith lead­ers in the com­mu­nity. Open­ing up the Mosque to the wider com­mu­nity dur­ing Ra­madan re­ally adds to the bril­liant at­mos­phere the Mosque cre­ates dur­ing this holy month”

Shaukat War­raich, founder and CEO of Faith As­so­ciates, said: “The growth of the Mosque If­tar Ini­tia­tive over the past six years demon­strates the shared de­sire for Mus­lims and non-Mus­lims to en­gage with and learn from one an­other.

“The mosque, es­pe­cially dur­ing Ra­madan, should be more than just a place to pray; it should be at the heart of the com­mu­nity.

“The Qu­ran teaches us to show kind­ness and gen­eros­ity to all our neigh­bours. Mosque If­tars are a great way of do­ing that, uniting peo­ple of all faiths and none.”

To get in­volved and to pro­mote a Mosque If­tar in your com­mu­nity, visit www.mosqueif­

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