Manchester communities come together at interfaith iftar

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Manchester communities come together at interfaith iftar

Participants emphasised the importance of shared values while learning about other faiths

More than 100 people of different faiths attended an interfaith meal to mark the end of a Ramadan fast in Manchester.

Faith communities celebrated together at a jointly held event, during which presentations were given about the Islamic calendar and the nature of fasting during Ramadan.

Representatives from Christianity, Buddhism, Sikhism, and Baha’i also discussed the role of fasting in their religion.

The event at Cheadle Mosque was organised by the Muslim-Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester and Faith Network 4 Manchester, and was designed to promote interfaith tolerance as part of #WeStandTogether, a national police campaign to promote community cohesion.

Iftar is the meal eaten at the end of a day of fasting during daylight hours in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The MJF-FN4M iftar began traditionally with dates and water, followed by halal or kosher meals.

In the wake of Brexit, MPs have condemned a slew of racist incidents against immigrants reported across the country. However in Manchester, Lord Mayor Carl Austin-Behan praised the diversity and tolerance of the region, citing the event as evidence that different faiths could happily coexist. “Tonight shows that we have got various people here all celebrating, talking together and mixing with each other.”

Rabbi Chanan Atlas of Yeshurun Synagogue hailed the event as “a meaningful expression of tolerance”, adding, “Our humanity, civility, and shared values unite us in our call for tolerance and cooperation.”

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