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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2760

Bradford as a role model for all

S.H.Moulana - Riyadh

Muslim community reaching into its pockets to save a synagogue in financial woes in Bradford, in Britain, is headline news in one of Israeli dailies.

A leaky roof brought together the city’s Jewish and Muslim communities. It is reported that for years Muslims and Jews of Bradford have lived in close quarters.

Bradford’s only synagogue is located just 500 meters from the city’s main mosque.

The news of the leaky roof of the synagogue made the local Muslim community to step up a donation campaign for immediate repairs.

The 87-year-old chairman of the synagogue said ‘It was true mitzvah – good deed’ and a gift from the Muslim community.

Zulfi Karim, the secretary of the Bradford Council of Mosques, was at Friday prayers when he heard of the synagogue’s plight.

The news came to him thanks to a local Pakistani restaurant which is located close to the synagogue and mosque. The restaurant was very popular with the synagogue’s congregants for a Saturday lunch.

Within few days the Muslim community raised Stg. Pound 2000.00 for emergency repairs.

We have so much in common said Karim, one of the chief donors. We both have a tradition of helping each other.

While acknowledging their common Abrahamic ancestry, he also pointed out that there are parallels between the anti-Semitism and Islamophobia both communities have endured.

Now, plans are afoot for more community building exercises. To kick off the annual Bradford World Curry Festival in June, special interfaith meals are being arranged at the mosque, the synagogue and at St. Paul church. ‘Food brings people together’ says Karim, who is currently consulting with local kosher and halal chefs about cross cultural meals.

The local communities proudly claim that their story represents a small window of hope for the rest of the world. No doubt, Bradford is a role model for others to coexist peacefully, wherever they are and whatever faith they follow.

Well done Bradford!

- Asian Tribune -

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