Community comes together to celebrate the Big Iftar

More guests at The Big Iftar in Staincliffe.
More guests at The Big Iftar in Staincliffe.

People of all faiths came together at the weekend to celebrate the end of Ramadan fasting with Muslim friends and neighbours.

Members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community invited colleagues, friends and neighbours to Baitul Atta Mosque in Staincliffe for the Big Iftar function on Saturday.

Guests joining them included Rev Simon Cash from Dewsbury Minster, Father Gordon Newton from Christ Church, Staincliffe as well as a number of local community and charity

workers.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in the Spen Valley acquired Baitul Atta mosque (the former Staincliffe Baptist Church) last year and this was the first Big Iftar held in the mosque in

Ramadan.

The Muslim holy month began on Tuesday May 7, during which Muslims abstain from food and drink from before dawn until dusk.

President of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Spen Valley, Arif Ahmad, said he was overwhelmed by the number of guests who attended.

“The government has made a big effort around the country for communities to come together at Iftar functions,” he said. "It definitely surpassed my expectations to have over 60 people attend including 31 non-Muslims.

“The idea was to get everyone together, sit down, share a meal and just to get to know one another.”

“Islam means peace and the motto of our community is “Love For All Hatred For None”. I am delighted that people from different ethnic and political backgrounds could share a meal

together and talk about how they can benefit their local community.”

Imam Sabahat Karim from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community recited some verses from the Holy Quran which declare that fasting is found in all religions – not just Islam.

Briefly addressing the audience at the event Rev Cash said that “breaking bread” with neighbours was an important Christian tradition and he was delighted that Christians

and Ahmadi Muslims were able to break bread at the Iftar.