If you were to believe the ramblings of a certain dictator wannabe over in the U.S., you’d think that religion (or a certain faith/belief) is responsible for all the ills of the world.
Indeed, if you were to believe that person, you’d want to see these groups of people harassed, thrown out a country, stopped from entering a country, and overall being treated like third-class citizens.
Thankfully, most people take his ramblings as the ignorant, fear-filled gibberish that they are, and see the bigger picture at work.
Like the amazing inter-faith friendship over in Montreal, Canada.
The One True Religion – Humanity
Thrown together (for want of a better description) in close proximity at a mini-mall, the Al Jazira mosque sits next to the Chabad synagogue, which is situated next door to the Catholic Sainte-Marguerite-Bourgeoys Church.
Instead of staying separated from each other, the three different faiths came together through conversation and genuine curiosity of how each other were doing each day.
That small step of saying hello to each other lead to them coming together to support a common purpose – a donation centre for newly-arrived Syrian refugees.
How they made that work is testament to how we can all make things work, despite (because of?) our “differences”.
The initiative was launched by the Muslim community of the mosque; the warehouse for the centre was arranged by the Jewish community (rent-free); and the centre itself was manned by the Catholic community.
Today, all three of the groups work together and provide/collect various toys, clothes, and other much-needed supplies.
One of the many positive things that have come from this amazing inter-faith project is the change in attitudes it’s empowering. As one volunteer said,
“Personally I had never been exposed to Arab culture. You hear negative things. This has changed my way of seeing the Muslim world. Spending time with them has opened me up to their culture. In the end, they’re not so different from us.” ~ source
Not so different, indeed. Something we all need to remember more often and help shift the conversation from hate and fear to love and acceptance.