Promoting unity among people of faith (or no particular faith) in the 21st Century.

InterFaith21 header image 1

President Obama’s Ramadan Message

August 22nd · No Comments · Barack Obama, Islam

Dear All,
It is my privilege, on behalf of, to try to make sense of the incomprehensible.
The briefest account of what is alleged to have happen two years ago provokes immediate recall even for people who don’t specifically recall where: the Dunbar Village Housing development in West Palm Beach, FL.
I am a stone’s throw away, at the Palm Beach County Courthouse. Jury selection is scheduled this morning in the first trial of defendants accused of the heinous gang rape and assault on a mother and son.
Two juries are to be selected; one for each of the defendants in this trial. That may not be completed today. In that case I am told the selection will continue through Thursday, with a break on Friday. We’ll await clarification from the judge.
My obligation am aim is to provide the facts you require to inform your view of all this. As a former news ombudsman (see I am particularly qualified to do this. As much as possible I’ll also be incorporating social and multimedia.
So look for my updates on Twitter.
Also, share your questions and comments that may inform my reporting.
And please, send your donations to support in this and similar efforts to provide us our own eyes and ears.
C.B. Hanif


Remarks of President Barack Obama


Ramadan Message

Washington, DC

On behalf of the American people – including Muslim communities in all fifty states – I want to

extend best wishes to Muslims in America and around the world. Ramadan Kareem.

Ramadan is the month in which Muslims believe the Koran was revealed to the Prophet

Muhammad, beginning with a simple word – iqra. It is therefore a time when Muslims reflect

upon the wisdom and guidance that comes with faith, and the responsibility that human beings

have to one another, and to God.

Like many people of different faiths who have known Ramadan through our communities and

families, I know this to be a festive time – a time when families gather, friends host iftars, and

meals are shared.  But I also know that Ramadan is a time of intense devotion and reflection – a

time when Muslims fast during the day and perform tarawih prayers at night, reciting and

listening to the entire Koran over the course of the month.

These rituals remind us of the principles that we hold in common, and Islam’s role in advancing

justice, progress, tolerance, and the dignity of all human beings.

For instance, fasting is a concept shared by many faiths – including my own Christian faith – as a

way to bring people closer to God, and to those among us who cannot take their next meal for

granted. And the support that Muslims provide to others recalls our responsibility to advance

opportunity and prosperity for people everywhere. For all of us must remember that the world we

want to build – and the changes that we want to make – must begin in our own hearts, and our

own communities.

This summer, people across America have served in their communities – educating children,

caring for the sick, and extending a hand to those who have fallen on hard times. Faith-based

organizations, including many Islamic organizations, have been at the forefront in participating

in this summer of service. And in these challenging times, this is a spirit of responsibility that we

must sustain in the months and years to come.

Beyond America’s borders, we are also committed to keeping our responsibility to build a world

that is more peaceful and secure.  That is why we are responsibly ending the war in Iraq. That is

why we are isolating violent extremists while empowering the people in places like Afghanistan

and Pakistan. That is why we are unyielding in our support for a two-state solution that

recognizes the rights of Israelis and Palestinians to live in peace and security. And that is why

America will always stand for the universal rights of all people to speak their mind, practice their

religion, contribute fully to society and have confidence in the rule of law.

All of these efforts are a part of America’s commitment to engage Muslims and Muslim-majority

nations on the basis of mutual interest and mutual respect. And at this time of renewal, I want to

reiterate my commitment to a new beginning between America and Muslims around the world.

As I said in Cairo, this new beginning must be borne out in a sustained effort to listen to each

other, to learn from each other, to respect one another, and to seek common ground. I believe an

important part of this is listening, and in the last two months, American embassies around the

world have reached out not just to governments, but directly to people in Muslim-majority

countries.  From around the world, we have received an outpouring of feedback about how

America can be a partner on behalf of peoples’ aspirations.

We have listened. We have heard you. And like you, we are focused on pursuing concrete

actions that will make a difference over time – both in terms of the political and security issues

that I have discussed, and in the areas that you have told us will make the most difference in

peoples’ lives.

These consultations are helping us implement the partnerships that I called for in Cairo – to

expand education exchange programs; to foster entrepreneurship and create jobs; and to increase

collaboration on science and technology, while supporting literacy and vocational learning. We

are also moving forward in partnering with the OIC and OIC member states to eradicate polio,

while working closely with the international community to confront common health challenges

like H1N1 – which I know is of particular to concern to many Muslims preparing for the

upcoming hajj.

All of these efforts are aimed at advancing our common aspirations – to live in peace and

security; to get an education and to work with dignity; to love our families, our communities, and

our God. It will take time and patient effort. We cannot change things over night, but we can

honestly resolve to do what must be done, while setting off in a new direction – toward the

destination that we seek for ourselves, and for our children. That is the journey that we must

travel together.

I look forward to continuing this critically important dialogue and turning it into action. And

today, I want to join with the 1.5 billion Muslims around the world – and your families and

friends – in welcoming the beginning of Ramadan, and wishing you a blessed month. May God’s

peace be upon you.


No Comments so far ↓

There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.

Leave a Comment