CAIR-Chicago Joins the JCUA at the Annual "Iftar in the Sukkah"

On October 1, 2007, CAIR-Chicago joined members of the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs (JCUA) for the annual “Iftar in the Sukkah” at the Anshe Sholom B’nai Israel synagogue in Lakeview. This year’s Ramadan coincided with the Jewish festival, Sukkot, which commemorates the ancient Israelites wandering the desert for 40 years after the Exodus from Egypt. CAIR-Chicago’s Executive Director, Ahmed Rehab; Outreach Coordinators Dina Rehab and Gerald Hankerson, Communications Advisor Sultan Muhammad, Alumni AbdulAleem Tayob and intern Whitney Nickels, as well as CAIR-Chicago’s Volunteer Activist, Zuheir Nubani attended the evening of festivities.

The event began with a brief introduction of both the Jewish holiday Sukkot and the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. Attendees were then encouraged to observe the Jewish prayers in the Synagogue, as well as the Muslim prayer at sunset, commonly known as “Maghreb”. JCUA members and guests joined members of the Muslim community in breaking their fast at the Sukkah. Sukkah is part of the Jewish tradition and “means booth or hut. During the holiday of Sukkot, Jews are instructed to construct a temporary structure in which to eat their meals, entertain guests, relax, and even sleep; reminiscent of the type of huts in which the ancient Israelites dwelt for 40 years.” Jews, Muslims, members of other faiths and ethnicities enjoyed dinner while reflecting on the similarities and differences of their religious and cultural traditions.

After dinner, entertainment was provided by youth members from the JCUA and the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN), who performed collaborated spoken word poetry and presented a filmed skit about breaking barriers within the Muslim and Jewish communities. The event closed with a traditional Jewish prayer.

CAIR-Chicago would like to thank Irene Sandalow and the JCUA for their warm hospitality!

The Jewish Council on Urban Affairs (JCUA) welcomes arriving guests!

Iftar at the Sukkah was hosted at the Anshe Sholom B’nai Israel Synagogue in Lakeview

JCUA volunteers greeted guests and shared information on Judaism and Islam

Volunteers smile as they cope with temporary rain

The evening began with brief presentations on both the Islamic and Jewish holidays

Brief presentations on both the Islamic and Jewish holidays

Muslims and Jews share a meal together celebrating their diversity

Guests mingled after the dinner.

Irene Sandalow (JCUA) (left) and Dina Rehab (CAIR-Chicago)

Copyright 2007