“We were heartbroken to learn of the hateful letter sent to the Masjid al Kareem Mosque this week,” said a different kind of letter sent to a Providence mosque this week, “We are living in frightening times and it is important to us that you know that we all stand with the Muslim community. Freedom to worship is a fundamental American principle guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. Religious pluralism is a strength and a source of pride for our state and our nation. Our state is stronger because of your presence here.”
This letter was a joint statement from Jewish and Christian communities responding to the hateful letter received by the Masjid al Kareem Mosque earlier this week and revealed yesterday. It was signed by Rabbi Sarah Mack, president of the Board of Rabbis of Greater Rhode Island, Rev. Dr. Don Anderson, executive director of the The Rhode Island State Council of Churches, and Marty Cooper, director of community relations council of the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island.
The letter continued, in the best spirit of Rhode Island, which was founded on the principle of freedom of conscience:
“You are our partner in social justice. As people of faith and children of Abraham we share a vision of human dignity and compassion. We are grateful for the opportunity to work hand in hand with the Muslim community to uphold the rights of the needy and vulnerable.
“The hostility and xenophobia expressed this past week cannot diminish all that we share. The warm relationships we have nurtured and cherished remain ever strong.
“We walk with you into the days to come, whatever they may bring, nourished by our common faith and hope in the future.”
Anderson told me that leaders at the mosque have been overwhelmed by support and are deeply appreciative to the community.