Helping 'Muslims for Life' commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11
In the last month I've been so busy trying to wage peace that I have not really had time to write about it.
In addition to helping organize the third annual Peace-ing It Together peace fair on Sept. 25, I am helping to organize Peace Week in Saratoga Springs for the week of Sept. 18-25. I co-chaired the 13th annual Kateri Peace Conference, organized lunches and dinner for the children of the backstretch workers and organized a blanket and toiletries drive for the same.
What I am most proud of though is helping the local Ahmadiyya Muslim Community organize a blood drive in Saratoga Springs to honor those killed in the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
A few months back my dear friend, Samin, called me and told me she needed my help and added “You cannot say 'no' ” (like I could ever say no to Samin -- she is one of the most decent and compassionate human beings I have ever met and calls me to be a better Christian with her example).
She explained what the national program Muslims for Life was about. It is a nationwide campaign to honor the victims of 9/11 on its 10th anniversary and uphold the message that Islam values the sanctity of life. During the month of September, the Ahmadiyya Muslims are holding blood drives at all their mosques and prayer centers in the United States, in collaboration with other community organizations. The goal is to collect 10,000 units of blood — which can help save 30,000 lives — during the month.
Working with Temple Sinai and the Presbyterian-New England Congregational Church, we have organized an interfaith blood drive for Thursday, Sept. 8 from 1 to 6 p.m. at the temple at 509 Broadway in Saratoga Springs. Walk-ins are welcome.
Since our invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq for the attack perpetrated by a group of Saudi Arabians, we have lost more Americans than were killed on 9/11. And that says nothing about the thousands upon thousands of civilians killed in those two countries. Add in the permanently maimed and disabled of those countries (I am including America) and the fact that we've bankrupted the USA paying for all of this death and destruction (I am including the destruction of our infrastructure, health care and retirement systems by neglect) and you have a tragedy that even the ancient Greeks could not have even begun to imagine.
I was wondering what I was going to do to mark the anniversary, besides praying, that is. Doing something to affirm life and help my Muslim brothers and sisters take back their religion from some misguided people hellbent on evil spoke to me. (I know how they feel -- I've been trying to rescue Jesus from the Religious Right for years -- it's a tough go.)
The Holy Quran in 5:33 says “We prescribed for the children of Israel that whosoever killed a person .... it shall be as if he had killed all mankind; and whoso gave life to one, it shall be as if her had given life to all mankind.”
Amen, amen and amen.
You can go to www.muslimsforlife.org for more information. If you are unable to come to Saratoga on the 8th you can participate on Saturday, Sept. 17 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at First Church in Albany, 110 North Pearl St.