Building bridges to harmony during Ramadan
Pictured: Mr Ahmet Polat, Affinity Intercultural Foundation, Grand Mufti of Australia Dr Ibrahim Mohammed and Rev Simon Hansford, Synod of NSW/ACT Moderator at the 2021 Building Harmony Iftar Dinner
April 6, 2022
Ramadan is the holiest month in the Muslim calendar. For Muslims, it is the month of fasting, and the breaking of the fast, the Iftar dinner, is an important ritual.
Each year during Ramadan, the Uniting Church Assembly, in partnership with the Synod of NSW/ACT and Uniting (NSW.ACT) join together with the Affinity Intercultural Foundation to host the Building Harmony Iftar Dinner. It is an opportunity to bring people of different faiths together in the spirit of friendship, extending the hospitality of Ramadan to create opportunities to build a more harmonious society.
This year, the Uniting Church and Affinity have created the information package below to help local congregations or communities to either host their own Iftar meal or to organise other opportunities that bring people of different faiths together or encourage greater understanding of different faiths.
It includes a 'Steps to Hosting an Iftar' guide and video messages from the President of the Uniting Church Rev Sharon Hollis and Executive Director of Affinity Mr Ahmet Polat (to come). The videos can be played as messages during an Iftar meal, or can be shared at any time to create greater awareness about what Ramadan is and to encourage reflection and commitment to working together and being in relationship with other faiths.
In her video, Rev Sharon Hollis says, "It is my understanding and my experience that being in relationship with people of other faiths can deeply enrich our own understandings of faith, and of God."
"We are grateful during this time (of Ramadan) to be enriched in our friendship with the Muslim community and to work together to build communities where we live in peace and goodwill as neighbours."
We extend our warm wishes to all Muslims who are marking the period of Ramadan and pray that it is a time of drawing closer to God, and building interfaith connections and understanding in the community.
Steps to hosting an Iftar