Blessed Ramadan

“‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Matthew 22:34-40, NRSV)

Grounded in our faith commitments to love of God and love of neighbor, the Wisconsin Council of Churches is reaching out to our Muslim neighbors with a message of solidarity and respect as the holy season of Ramadan approaches.  We commit to be compassionate neighbors, bearing witness to the love and justice of Jesus Christ when those of other faith traditions experience prejudice.

Join the Wisconsin Council of Churches, as well as Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice and the Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee, our partners in this initiative, in wishing all Muslims a #BlessedRamadan.  Share your message of welcome and solidarity with a #BlessedRamadan lawn sign.


How can I get a sign?

Madison, Appleton, Eau Claire, Stevens Point and Milwaukee:

The recommended donation for a 24″ x 18″ sign is $21, including the accompanying metal stand.  Use the form at the bottom of this page to order, then pick up during office hours at

Signs will be available for pickup beginning Tuesday, May 8 while supplies last. Please call ahead to schedule pickup.

Please note, pickup locations cannot receive money on our behalf –
donations will only be processed online.


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

When is Ramadan?

Ramadan begins at sunset on Tuesday, May 15, and lasts until Thursday, June 14.

Why a sign?  Why now?

  • We live in a time when people are increasingly emboldened to turn their differences into excuses for stereotyping, defamation and violence. Yet, we are called as people of faith to civil discourse and to relationship. This lawn sign is a public gesture of goodwill and an opportunity to practice hospitality, offering a visible welcome to our Muslim neighbors.
  • Recent policy debates have called out Muslim immigrants specifically in ways that have not reflected compassion or hospitality. The WCC’s 2014 Statement on Interfaith Relations invites member churches to “defend the rights and liberties of cultural, racial and religious minorities in the same manner that we defend their own.”  We are offering a public witness against bigotry and hatefulness.
  • Ramadan offers a timely opportunity for us to show support. Ramadan is the month of the Islamic lunar calendar during which Muslims abstain from food and drink from sunrise to sunset. The annual observance is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and is performed to learn compassion, self-restraint, and generosity.

 How can I participate in #BlessedRamadan? Is there a cost?

  • Extend a sign of goodwill by ordering a sign and placing it on your lawn on May 15, the beginning of Ramadan. If you order your sign late, please feel free to join in when you can!
  • We suggest a donation of $21 for each sign, which includes the stand. Your donation covers the cost of your sign/stand and additional Blessed Ramadan program coordination costs. Anything more supports the WCC’s ministries working toward peace, justice and interfaith understanding.
  • See our tips below for going beyond the lawn sign.

How can my group participate in #BlessedRamadan?

  • Organize as quickly as you can! Invite your congregation to participate, by making the project known and inviting individuals to order, or providing a supply of signs for households to take home for their own yards or windows.
  • Increase participation by enlisting help from your peace/justice committee, refugee support committee, or congregation members who are active in organizations seeking peace and respect for diversity in your community.
  • Create some buzz: Post about Blessed Ramadan on Facebook or other social media. Take a photo of your Blessed Ramadan sign and post about it using the hashtag #BlessedRamadan! Invite your members to like and share your post.
  • Include the project in congregational emails. Put an announcement on your website. Sample bulletin/newsletter language:

    From April 2017 Interfaith March for Peace and Justice

We live in a time when people are emboldened to turn their differences into excuses for stereotyping, bigotry and violence. As people of faith, we have an opportunity and responsibility to demonstrate our care for our neighbors with signs of hospitality that rebut religious stereotyping and prejudice. We have joined with other congregations and the Wisconsin Council of Churches to support the #BlessedRamadan Project, which serves to wish a Blessed Ramadan to our Muslim neighbors with lawn signs.

We are one of the churches leading the way, and we encourage you to display a sign in your own yard or window during the month of Ramadan, between May 15 and June 14, as an offer of goodwill to the Muslim community. Signs will be available for you to take home on {date}.

(You might also offer details regarding what your place of worship will do, or has already done, in addition to the placement of the signs.)

 

How can I make my participation in #BlessedRamadan more meaningful than just putting out a sign?

Deepen your learning about why and how Christians engage in interfaith relations in healthy, responsible ways. The Wisconsin Council of Churches has developed two resources which may be helpful to you and/or your faith community:

Read ‘Loving Our Neighbors: A Statement of the WCC on Interfaith Relations

Download and use Loving Our Interfaith Neighbors: A Study-Action Guide

Let #BlessedRamadan be more than a gesture. Take this opportunity to learn more about Islam.  Build interfaith relationships.  Visit an interfaith Break the Fast (Iftar) or other celebration.

Interfaith Celebrations During Ramadan

Contact our office at (608) 837-3108 if you would like to add other events to this listing:

Interfaith Ramadan Iftar Break-the-Fast  – June 2, 7:30 pm at Edgewood College, Madison, sponsored by Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice

 

Help spread the word of respect and welcome for our Muslim neighbors!

 


Yes! I’m ready to make a donation in support of the #BlessedRamadan project and order my sign(s)!

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