Peace Islands Institute

Feb 20th
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Dialogue and Unity Dinner for Ladies

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On the first Saturday of Holy Ramadan the women of three religions came together to celebrate the month of Ramadan. The program was held in the Carlstadt Center of IDC. The guests had the opportunity of getting to know each other better, enjoyed the delicious Turkish food to break their fasts and realized the bounties of Ramadan. During the month of Ramadan Muslims fast during the day from sunrise to sunset in remembrance of the poor and needy in their communities and during this month Muslim community raise funds for them.

Dialogue and Unity Dinner

The program started with the call for prayer, adhan, followed by the dinner. After the dinner the guest prayed for the best of mind, health, and food. The program continued with the presentation of Turkish art of marbling, ebru and the guest have also found the opportunity of hands-on application of the art. At the end of the program the guests have united with each other with the small gifts of IDC and the song of Mahsun Kirmizigul:

Wherever there are people helping each other, wherever there is love, God is there

The people with crippled hearts are wreaking havoc
Wars and poverty have taken over the world
What did the Four Books write about bad people ...
Those who kill, who commit acts of racism,
Who torture are not of us ...
Evil people heed neither book nor law
May the wars end in this world finally
What Moses said to the Pharaoh,
Those who kill, who commit acts of racism,
Who torture are not of us ...
May the hardened hearts fill with love
May the hungry children cry no more
What Jesus said about love ...
Those who do not love, have no mercy,
trample on human rights are not of us ...
Freedom has been used up, justice is finished
People without sin are tormented
What Mohammed said to the community ...
Those who do not care for others, who do not rush to help,
Who do not fear God are not of us

Dialog and Unity Dinner

Michelle Tokuc (Guest):
Tonight is very wonderful to share a lot of things with Muslim community and rest of the world actually it is what Ramadan offers us. I like to share everything with everyone. I will join IDC event as long as I am invited because we meet so many different people who have different background, occupation, and experience. We are very much the same and I would like to know all of these people.

Rev. Cari Keith (Guest):
This is my fifth time having iftar with Turkish community. Every time it gets more wonderful because I meet very kinds of more people and I learn something new. I also love Turkish people' hospitality. Ramadan is time for fasting and to remember hunger and help others. Ramadan is also time to share food, hospitality, and faith to get come together. I certainly come again to IDC.

Sister Maryann Mueller (Guest):
This is my first time being at iftar. I have learned about Ramadan from an Islam seminar that I had been and from internet. It is celebration of 30 day fasting and purification of sins. It is also time to feel hunger and poor people' feeling and to share everything. Tonight IDC organization is beautiful.

Fabiana Basse (Guest):
I am fasting first time. I feel very nice to break fasting all together. I enjoy a lot. I wish Ramadan should be more than a month. Ramadan is time to think about other people who do not have food and share yours with others especially with your neighbor otherwise you are not a good person as a Muslim. More importantly Ramadan is time to think about Allah. It is a very good opportunity from God. I continue fasting and I am planning to learn more about Islam.

Rev. Carol Marshall (Guest):
I have been recipient of hospitality from IDC in many different ways but I have never involved iftar. Everything is perfect tonight it is wonderful feeling been welcome. I learned more about Turkey tonight. And also I learned something new such as what the purpose of Ramadan is, how you break the fast, and what it means. I think Ramadan is looking at yourself spiritually and compassion of others. IDC welcomes all variety of people that is why I am here because I like to learn about other people' lives and their faith. Religion is extremely important for me. I believe we all have a common in our devotion. I keep asking with my church for further IDC involvement and I try to get all the time. IDC has great atmosphere.

Dilara Celik (Organizer):
Tonight we are sharing our foods and spiritual feelings with our friends regardless of their faith and religion. We would like to take Ramadan is an opportunity to share and introduce others our religion and cultural values. Ramadan gives us a chance to understand the poor and hunger people feelings while we are fasting from sunrise to sunset.

Dialog and Unity Dinner

Peggy Quattrocchi (Guest):
I like Turkish culture and people. Turkish are all refine, educated, truthful, and wise people specially women. I believe Turkish women are a real example for American women. I hope all American women could benefit from having contact with Turkish women. I am very impress and in my happiest time spent with is my Turkish friend. Ramadan is similar to the Christian tradition of land. We fast about six weeks and we give arms to the poor. We have a common way of thinking and doing things. That is why, I feel like at home among Muslims. I have never felt so comfortable with anyone being with a Muslim.

Jilana Dellal (Guest):
I have been involved iftar before. I am very interested in comparing religions and how different religions do certain things. I am Jewish and we have a same thing. We have fast days but we don't have a whole month. That's why, I know the feeling being hungry whole day and wanting the breaking the fast. The idea of doing this is to think about the poor but I think I cannot do it everyday for a month as a Muslim. I have learned a lot about Islam tonight. I love the conversation and friendship tonight the most. I have been involving IDC events in couple of years and I continue to participate.

Kathy Pietras (Guest):
It is my first time involvement of iftar and I feel wonderful. It is such a spiritual feeling. There is a great community here that they care about you. It is a very nice experience for me. I like to be here. I know Ramadan it is a time for fasting. And also Ramadan is a form of worship; it is a discipline in your faith. Ramadan makes a restoration of your soul. The things that affect me the most are sense of community, spirit of love, and good will. It is so much needed in this world because so many terrible things out there. But IDC atmosphere has so many positive things that we need it. I will take all these positive things and my experience here to my community and share with them what I have experienced in IDC.

Kathleen Bhargava (Guest):
I was invited to IDC by my neighbor. I had my first iftar experience in her house this is my second iftar.
First of all the food is wonderful as always. To see diverse of people and all difference are wonderful.
Christianity and Judaism have similar things which are great tradition. There is an interfaith atmosphere here and definitely this is a wonderful benefit for all communities all together to understand and share difference which is everybody like it. When my neighbor was invited me I was much honored and her sincerity brought me here tonight in spite of a terrible hurricane outside.


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