(March 19, 2015) – Students at the University of Toronto St. George campus held a Muslim Jewish Day of Service last Friday, March 13.
“The objective of this event is to cultivate a deeper understanding between the Muslim and Jewish faiths,” Ahmad Diab Marzouk, President of the Muslim Students’ Association, told IQRA. “This is done through partaking in a shared community and religious service.”
“The goal of the community service portion is to establish common grounds that both faiths can build on, and the religious service portion allows participants to develop a shared understanding of each other’s practices.”
The day’s activities were facilitated by Muslim Chaplain Amjad Tarsin and Rabbi Aaron Katchen and began with participants volunteering at the Scott Mission where a full meal was served to about 250 people in need.
“There have always been several interfaith initiatives between Muslim and Jewish groups throughout the years at the University of Toronto,” added Ahmad Diab Marzouk. “The nature of which can vary from tree planting to engaging in charity. This event is another unique addition to these initiatives.”
The Muslim Jewish Day of Service activities included the Muslim Jum’uah prayers at the Multi-faith Centre and finished with the Jewish Shabbat observance and dinner at the Wolfond centre where there was an opportunity for attendees to reflect and ask questions.
“This event allows students to know one another at a deeper level. We live in a very diverse society where each of us have our own unique set of practices,” said Marzouk. “It is very easy to form an impression about the other group indirectly through others. The aim is to gain a first-hand appreciation and understanding of each group, and have an opportunity to ask questions and learn about each other.”