Dear Clergy Brother/Sister,
I am proud to announce that Interfaith Dialog Center (IDC) is expanding and diversifying its activities to spread dialog and mutual understanding at the grassroot level. We believe that sustainable dialogue can only be achieved if we experience it at all levels of the society.
To serve this end, IDC has a project. As you may all know, Ramadan (the month that Muslims fast throughout) is soon starting. Ramadan is special in Muslims’ prayer and spiritual life in a sense that they demonstrate their devotion to God Almighty, by performing their obligatory fasting, giving their compulsory charity in this month, and performing other extra prayer services.
Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) urged the Muslims to invite and share the dinner with their friends even if only he/she possesses a single date or olive to serve. Members of Turkish American are inviting their Christian, Jewish and other brothers and sisters to share Iftar Dinners (breaking the fast) at their homes. If you and/or families from your congregations are willing to experience warmth, friendship and Turkish food with a hospitable Turkish family, please contact IDC and we will match the families together. Your presence will honor and bless the family and their home.
Our guests will observe two of core pillars of Islam:
- breaking the fast and
- evening prayer (Muslims pray 5 times daily; evening payer is the 4th prayer of the day)
Guests will have chance to interact with the Muslim family and their way of life and practice. The dinner will be informal. The host family would love to invite guest family along with their children. The dinner is around 7.00 pm in the beginning of Ramadan (Sept. 23) and 6.15 pm at the end (Oct. 22).
I am sure our guests will love home made Turkish food and Turkish tea.
What I need to know to be able to match similar families are whether they have children (and their ages) and where they live.
Most Turkish families reside in the North Jersey, Central Jersey Piscataway area and in the south around Burlington.
I am hopeful that this project will come true, deepen the relationship amongst members of faith community, be fruitful for many outcomes, and continue in the next years.
With my warmest regards,
Shalom, Peace, Salaam,
Levent Koc, Ph.D.
Director and Program Coordinator