A Muslim group aimed at fostering peace and integration in Ireland has joined with members of the nation’s LGBT community to break bread during Ramadan.
In an effort to exhibit “ true Islamic ideals,” the Irish Muslim Peace & Integration Council encouraged a whole host of folks from outside the religion to share in the spirit of the sacred holiday on Saturday.
Fasting is observed from daybreak to sunset during Ramadan to exhibit self-restraint and is one of the five pillars of Islam.
During the day, participants, if is sacred, must refrain from smoking, drinking, eating, sex, and other pleasures until nightfall.
“As more than one billion Muslims world-wide celebrate Ramadan by fasting and appreciating the blessings granted to us it is equally important for the Irish Muslim community to get in touch with our neighbors as an example of authentic Islamic ideals,” said Shaykh Dr. Umar Al-Qadri, imam and chairman of the council.
The shared Iftar dinner, the meal when the fast is finished, took place in Dublin and was also attended by Jewish Holocaust survivor and guest speaker Tomi Reichental.
Dr. Al Qadri has been an outspoken supporter of the LGBT community in Ireland, likening discrimination against gay and transgender people to that experienced by Muslims.
Following the Orlando shootings at a gay cabaret in Florida, he told the Irish Examiner that he stood with the LGBT community.
I stand with the LGBT community and I am against the marginalization of any group,” he said.
It shouldn't have happened. We're a minority ourselves, we understand what discrimination is