Less than 30 minutes into the Women of Diversity Dinner, the floor was full with women dancing hand-in-hand as the sounds of Dahlia Dior reverberated energy and warmth around the room.
The dinner brought together more than 350 women from different cultural backgrounds – half of them newly arrived in Australia – for a joyful celebration of community harmony at the Emporium Function Centre in Bankstown on 29 July.
The Islamophobia Report released this week revealed many disturbing things.
Researchers analysed 243 verified reports to the Islamophobia Register. Of those reports, 67.7 per cent of the victims were women while 68.5 per cent of the perpetrators were men.
Thirty Uniting Church and Muslim community members came together in friendship at the first Iftar dinner hosted by the Queensland Synod.
Held at the Uniting Church Centre in Auchenflower on Sunday 18 June, the Iftar Dinner provided an opportunity for religious leaders from both communities to share stories and get to know one another.
More than 120 people gathered to break bread in the spirit of love and friendship at the Iftar dinner held at Parramatta Mission.
Hosted by the Uniting Church and the Affinity Intercultural Foundation, the gathering included local members of Parliament, police, religious and community leaders, representatives of other faiths as well as Uniting Church and Muslim members.
Forty-five Uniting Church and Muslim friends gathered in a spirit of love and friendship at the Iftar Dinner hosted at St Thomas Uniting Church in Craigieburn in the north of Melbourne.
The Iftar meal is the breaking of the fast at sunset during Ramadan for Muslims.
In a sign of solidarity and friendship with the Australian Muslim community, the Uniting Church will co-host Iftar dinners in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane during Ramadan this year.
President of the Uniting Church in Australia Stuart McMillan offered his good wishes to all Muslims for a blessed and peaceful Ramadan.
Recently, I participated in the Australian National Dialogue of Christians, Muslims and Jews. We began the dialogue with prayers for the victims of the Manchester Arena bombing.
The topic of the meeting was fasting, with particular focus given to the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
When NSW Police Senior State Chaplain Rev. David Riethmuller walks into a police station, the first thing he hears is “Hello chaplain”.
“The next thing they say to me is - ‘I need to let you know I’m not religious’. I say to them ‘But I reckon you’re spiritual’,” says David, a Uniting Church minister.
Members of the National Dialogue between the Uniting Church in Australia Assembly and the Executive Council of Australian Jewry have discussed how peacebuilding in the Middle East might begin with listening to one another’s stories.