WASHINGTON, May 19, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On or about Saturday, May 27,* the Muslim community in America and around the world will begin the month-long fast of Ramadan (rom-a-don).
[*NOTE: Because the beginning of Islamic lunar months depends on the actual sighting of the new moon, the start and end dates for Ramadan may vary. Consult local Muslim communities for the beginning and end dates of Ramadan. Also today, CAIR condemned a planned cross-burning by the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) on Saturday in Pennsylvania's southern Lancaster County. SEE: http://tinyurl.com/PACrossBurning ]
Because of the rising level of Islamophobia nationwide in recent months, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) -- the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization -- is urging local mosques to host "Fast Forward" interfaith "iftars," or fast-breaking meals. #FastForwardIftar
CAIR says the "Fast Forward" theme for the iftars reflects the need for all Americans to go forward united in support of traditional American values of inclusion and respect for diversity during a time of increasing political division and rising bigotry targeting minority groups.
"Along with the recent rise of Islamophobia and other forms of bigotry nationwide, we have seen a similar increase in support for the American Muslim community and for other targeted communities," said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. "By hosting 'Fast Forward' iftars, Muslim communities have the opportunity to help unify our nation and move it forward on a path that respects long-standing American values, not the distortions of those values we see so often today."
To assist local Muslim community leaders in planning Ramadan events, CAIR will host a webinar on May 24 offering step-by-step advice on hosting an "Fast Forward" interfaith iftar.
WHAT: 'Planning a 'Fast Forward' Interfaith Iftar this Ramadan' Webinar
WHEN: Wednesday, May 24 at 8 p.m. EDT
Webinar speakers include CAIR-Missouri Executive Director Faizan Syed, CAIR-Georgia Executive Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell, CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, and CAIR National Chapter Director Lori Saroya.
The webinar will offer advice on forming a "Fast Forward" committee, a template for an iftar media advisory, advice on reaching out to local media, a sample advertisement for the event, text for a "Welcome to Our Ramadan Fast Forward Interfaith Iftar" brochure, frequently-asked questions about Ramadan, and a sample event program.
Ramadan is the month on the Islamic lunar calendar during which Muslims abstain from food, drink and other sensual pleasures from break of dawn to sunset. The fast is performed to learn discipline, self-restraint and generosity, while obeying God's commandments. Fasting (along with the declaration of faith, daily prayers, charity, and pilgrimage to Mecca) is one of the "five pillars" of Islam.
The end of Ramadan will be marked by communal prayers called "Eid ul-Fitr," or Feast of the Fast-Breaking on or about June 25.
The Washington-based civil rights and advocacy organization urges community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR's Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/report
CAIR's 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.
La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.
CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, firstname.lastname@example.org
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SOURCE Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)