On Friday, June 2, the Columbus, Ohio, chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Columbus) will host its 21st Annual “Sharing Ramadan Interfaith Iftar” at the Dublin Recreation Center.
The event is designed to welcome the fast of the holy month of Ramadan and to help those of other faiths better know the Columbus Muslim community. Attendees from other faiths will get a glimpse of how Muslims celebrate Ramadan and of the experience of fasting.
Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic lunar calendar during which Muslims fast from just before dawn until sunset. The fast is performed to increase spirituality, increase discipline, self-restraint, and generosity while obeying God’s commandments. An iftar is the fast-breaking meal eaten just after sunset.
“Each year, Ramadan presents us with a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the interconnectedness of the Abrahamic faiths and our shared values as a community,” said Jennifer Nimer, CAIR-Columbus executive director. “This year more than ever, we feel it is important for American Muslims to reach out to their neighbors of all faiths in an atmosphere of sharing and mutual respect.”
Tickets for the CAIR-Columbus Sharing Ramadan Interfaith Iftar are free for interfaith guests, and may be obtained here: https://www.cair-columbus.com/event/21st-annual-sharing-ramadan-interfaith-iftar/
In addition to outreach, CAIR-Columbus will also welcome Ramadan with a community service event on Friday, June 9 in which its members will cook and serve food for all the residents at the YWCA Family Shelter on Columbus’ east side. The event is part of the CAIR-Columbus Feeding Families Initiative, which encourages Muslims to get involved in community service by signing up to volunteer monthly at the family shelter.
The end of Ramadan will be marked by the Islamic holiday of “Eid ul-Fitr,” or Feast of the Fast-Breaking on or about June 25. The holiday is celebrated with communal prayers and gift-giving.
Due to the large Muslim workforce in Central Ohio, CAIR-Columbus recently released its Employer’s Guide to Ramadan which explains how Ramadan and the Eid holidays are celebrated and the accommodations Muslim employees may require.
CAIR-Columbus is asking Muslim community members who believe their rights have been violated to contact CAIR-Columbus’ Civil Rights Department at 614-451-3232 or by filing a report online at www.cair-columbus.com.
CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.