Ramadan: Global Unity, Community Cohesion

Decorations in the streets of the Old city of Jerusalem at night during Ramadan, including a star paper lantern

The Holy Month of Ramadan is one of the most special times of the year for our entire planet, whether we are Muslim or follow another faith or none.

It’s estimated that there are 1.8 billion Muslims in the world, the vast majority of which are observing a month of fasting, reflection and spiritual development. This constitutes 24% of the global population, coming together in a period of peace, giving to those less fortunate and becoming closer to The Almighty.

It’s an inspiring event, uniting people of countless ethnicities, ages and backgrounds and the meaning of Ramadan reverberates around the world.

It’s also an important time at a local community level. Muslim communities across the UK come together during Ramadan to host events, care for one another and eat together after sundown. More people visit their local mosque more often and spend more time with their friends and family. Connections are made between the generations and with people we might not have met before who live in our local area.

The FMO has been helping to organise a variety of Iftars around Leicester, from hosting students at university, to holding interfaith gatherings, caring for people in need, and catering for politicians, civic leaders and the wider community.

This is one of the most wonderful elements of Ramadan.

Ramadan is a time when our communities can also celebrate life and reconnect with ourselves, our friends and family, and our neighbours. Thousands are organising events during the Holy Month, such as the hundreds of The Big Iftar get togethers happening all around Britain at the moment.

Launched in 2012, The Big Iftar has provided a platform for Iftars to take place in homes, community centres, synagogues, parks, town squares, schools and just about anywhere. Muslims are encouraged to open up Iftar events and invite friends and neighbours to share in this blessed time.

It brings us closer and can help underpin interfaith unity and understanding. As the organisers of The Big Iftar initiative say: It has never been more important for people of all backgrounds to come together and get to know each other better. Big Iftar events are community-led and enable people from diverse backgrounds to meet and enjoy traditional and delicious food in an atmosphere of friendship and hospitality.

We wish you all a blessed Ramadan and encourage everyone to reach out to our local community to build a brighter future of cohesion, understanding and solidarity.

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