Nihad Awad: U.S. Muslims to Pray for End to Gulf Oil Spill
Americans of all faiths asked to join nationwide spiritual efforts
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 6/9/10) -- A prominent national Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization today called on mosques and other houses of worship across the nation to offer prayers for an end to the Gulf oil spill and the environmental disaster it is causing.
The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is urging prayer leaders (imams) in the nation's more than 2,000 mosques to use sermons at congregational prayers this Friday to offer special supplications for a speedy end to the oil spill crisis.
Mosque officials are also being asked to encourage community members to volunteer to assist in Gulf Coast relief efforts as part of CAIR's ongoing "Muslims Care" volunteerism initiative.
CAIR is requesting that religious leaders of other faiths offer similar prayers and supplications based on their own traditions.
"Engineers, officials and residents of the Gulf Coast are doing their best to mitigate this environmental disaster and people of faith must also do what they can to seek divine intervention when human efforts fall short," said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. "Along with the prayers, we ask American Muslims to volunteer their time and talents to assist in the massive clean up effort."
He cited the Quran, Islam's revealed text, which states: "O you who have attained to faith! Seek aid in steadfast patience and prayer: for, behold, God is with those who are patient in adversity." (2:153)
Awad said CAIR chapters around the nation will encourage interfaith partners to join the spiritual effort along with local mosques.
"This nationwide spiritual effort could have the added benefit of strengthening bonds between Americans of all faiths," said Awad.
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CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.