Rev. Rebecca urges us to attend May 22 Iftar 
Newburyport Senior Center, 331 High St., gather at 6pm, program start at 6:30pm 

Rev. Rebecca hopes to have “great participation from members and friends” in the Iftar being held Wednesday evening, May 22, in what Chair Katherine Preftes, Newburyport Human Rights Commission, stresses “are extremely challenging times.” 

The evening will feature Robert Azzi, with his “Ask A Muslim Anything” program. We will gather in the Newburyport Senior Center lobby at 6pm. The event starts at 6:30pm. 

“Celebrations of community, positivity and civility are increasingly important,” Preftes said. “The Iftar celebrates this spirit of community, while raising awareness about one of the world’s major faiths. The Newburyport Human Rights Commission is pleased to host this celebration for the third year in a row.” 

Rev. Rebecca continued, “This community and interfaith engagement is exciting and critical work. I look forward to being with you then!”  

Speaking for the Muslin community in the city, Ahmer Ibrahim, a commission member, said, “This is a great event that allows the whole community to come together to learn about Islam and see what it is like to break fast together.   

“It is heartwarming to see so many community members come together to learn about Ramadan and other Islamic traditions,” he said. “These types of interfaith and community-building events help create the strong community we have here in Newburyport. It is always wonderful to see so many members of our diverse faith community here in Newburyport attend this event.”  

“This year I will be giving a brief introduction about Islam,” he said. “We will then have Azzi, a New Hampshire journalist, who will present his “Ask A Muslim Anything” program.” 

Ibrahim explained that his wife, Newburyport City Councilor At-Large Afroz Khan, “saw this program last year in Seabrook and found it amazing. 

“We will then conclude with a little primer on breaking the fast and what the Muslim prayer entails.  Guests will then all symbolically ‘break fast’ together at sundown and can then observe the evening prayer prior to enjoying dinner and friendly conversation.”  

Councilor Khan explained that “An Iftar is the daily Muslim breaking of the fast during the month of Ramadan. During Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset.  

“Join local Muslims, members of the Islamic Center of Boston, and friends from Newburyport,” she said, “as they share their Ramadan traditions with the Newburyport community.” 

The schedule is: 6 pm–arrival; 6:30pm–Islam 101; 6:50pm-Robert Azzi-“Ask a Muslim Anything”; 7:50pm–The Iftar Itself: fast breaking, prayers and dinner. 

– John Harwood 

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