Letters to the Editor, week of Nov. 23, 2011

Interfaith opportunity should not be missed

There comes a moment in time when the decision to act, to make a committment, to pay back for what others have done for us is upon us. The time has come.

In the 1990s in Billings, Mont. a brick was thrown through a window where there was a Hanukkah menorah. Within weeks every shopkeeper and resident had a menorah in Billings to say “anti-Semitism won’t happen here.” In 1956, the Catholic Archdiocese added its voice to Temple Israel’s lawsuit seeking to build its new synagogue in Creve Coeur, effectively saying Interfaith support for the Jewish community has happened time and time again.

This year the Missouri House tried to pass an anti-Sharia law. In Tennessee, a group tried to sue in court to try to prove that Islam is not a religion and prevent a Mosque from being built.

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It’s time to come together as a community and say, we value freedom for people of all religions and we thumb our nose at those who try to divide us.

In that spirit, I hope you will join the Muslim-Jewish Day of Service on Dec. 25.

There are 22 different service projects in the community, from visiting nursing homes to working at the Juenile Detention Center in St. Louis. There are 18 different Organizations in both the Islamic and Jewish communities of St. Louis sponsoring this Day of Service; from Temple Israel and Central Reform Congregation to the Islamic Foundation of St. Louis.

Why is this important? The more people interact and take time to meet their neighbors-Muslim or otherwise-the less ignorance is out there. There is no better way to learn about other faiths than by joining together for a day of service and working alongside members of the Muslim community.

Help me make a difference.

For more information or to sign up, visit www.stljewishmuslimdayofservice.org, or contact Gail Wechsler at the JCRC at 314-442-3894 or [email protected]

Rick Isserman

Creve Coeur