Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Muslim and Jewish volunteers work together on social projects on Christmas Day--to give Christians the day off

I'm surprised Rick "Deeds, Not Creeds" Warren wasn't involved in this endeavour, as reported by Orlander Brand-Williams of the Detroit News, December 24, 2012:

Detroit — Close to 800 volunteers from the area's Jewish and Muslim communities will fan out across Metro Detroit on Tuesday for a day of volunteerism called Mitzvah Day.

It's the single largest day of volunteering for local Jews, organizers say.

And it's also the third year Muslims and Jews will work side by side in volunteer projects that will give Christian volunteers the day off so they can celebrate Christmas.

"It's becoming a real exciting thing," said Micki Grossman, one of three chairs for the Mitzvah (good deeds) Day Project, organized by the Jewish Community Relations Council.

"It's been wonderful. (Good deeds) is what we're supposed to do."

Participants will volunteer at 40 charities and community organizations from 6:45 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Besides the hundreds who will work on Christmas, there are 80 on a waiting list in hopes of being assigned to a project.

Dr. Muzammil Ahmed, chairman of the Michigan Muslim Community Council, said working with Jewish volunteers on Mitzvah Day is a great contribution to Metro Detroit and a "wonderful opportunity to share our wonderful commonalities."

Ahmed said he hopes Mitzvah Day reminds people some of the tensions between Jews and Muslims are "relatively new," having occurred only in the past 100 years or so.

He added that the two groups lived in harmony for more than a century.

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