Interfaith Joint Statement of Solidarity
with the Muslim Community
For as long as EBHO has existed, people of diverse faith communities have worked together to create a culture where housing is both a human right and a moral obligation, coming to be known as Interfaith Communities United. Across diverse faiths, we have lifted up a shared commitment to housing with dignity for all people, particularly those most ignored by our society. And we have always remembered that affordable housing is a means to the much larger end of building communities where everyone’s gifts are honored and needs are met (or as Dr. King called it, “the Beloved Community”).
So when immigrants from any nation come under attack, when refugees fleeing terrifying violence are rejected, and when our Muslim brothers, sisters and kin’s safety and dignity are threatened, it is important to all of us who work for justice because we are people of faith to stand up for a better vision for our country. For that reason, EBHO’s Interfaith Communities United is proud to have drafted and collaborated in creating this statement of solidarity with our Muslim family in this moment.
You who believe! Be upright for God, witnesses to justice; and do not let your hatred of a people move you to a position where you are unjust. Be just, that is closer to piety. Be mindful of God! Verily God is well informed concerning all that you do. [Quran 4:135]
As partners, Faith Alliance for a Moral Economy, EBHO’s Interfaith Communities United, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition of Contra Costa County, and Oakland Community Organizations work for immigrant and worker’s rights, affordable housing, racial and education justice work, and safe communities. Our work is shaped by the wisdom of many different faiths, and among the people who strengthen our work are our Muslim brothers, sisters, and kin. Our work for equity, opportunity and dignity for all is under threat when any of us find ourselves under attack because of our faith.
In these last several months, the Islamic community has been targeted with hate crimes, death threats, armed protests in front of mosques and the defacing of worship spaces. Politicians have played a significant role in encouraging hate and intolerance towards people who participate in a life-giving religion. Refugees’ ability to find refuge in this nation has been threatened. We are a nation founded on the constitutional guarantee and foundational value of religious liberty, which ensures that all people may work in ways grounded by the positive and healing role of faith and religion in public life. One million Muslims are part of the fabric of our country contributing as doctors, parents, teachers, nurses, bus drivers, students, justice advocates and clergy bringing a richness to our diversity and multi cultures. As people of faith, we strongly condemn the current culture of fear-mongering and demonization by public figures which leads to violence in our community.
We believe in a Bay Area, a United States and a world where people’s understanding of Islam involves Allah the Merciful, not ISIS. We believe in a world in which Christians, Jews, Muslims and all religions recognize each other as brothers, sisters, and kin. In that world, we can more powerfully build communities of equality, justice, and power for all people. We envision a world where all faiths are respected, and extremist actions are seen as just that – extreme actions from extreme people, not representations of a broad and diverse community of faithful and generous people.
Our work in FAME, ICU, IMHI, MFAC and OCO is better because of our brothers, sisters, and kin who are part of the Islamic faith because our sisters, brothers, and kin who are part of the Islamic faith, and whose lives and witness to the sacred and moral in life, offer inspiration and vision to the Interfaith community. We support our Muslim friends and condemn all actions of intolerance, hate, and mistrust against them.
Signed by the following collaborative interfaith organizations:
- East Bay Housing Organizations
- Faith Alliance for a Moral Economy (a project of East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy)
- Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity
- Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition of Contra Costa County
- Oakland Community Organizations (part of the PICO network)
To learn more about EBHO’s Interfaith Communities United, click here, or email our Director of Interfaith Programs, Rev. Sandhya Jha at email@example.com.