Friday, 10 July 2015 00:00

Muslim Group Launches Campaign to Raise Money to Help Rebuild Black Churches Damaged by Fires

Written by Stephen A. Crockett Jr. | The Root
Briar Creek Road Baptist Church in Charlotte, N.C., after a fire June 24, 2015  Briar Creek Road Baptist Church in Charlotte, N.C., after a fire June 24, 2015 Time Warner News Screenshot

The “Respond With Love” campaign was put together by three Muslim organizations to raise money for black churches that have burned in recent weeks.  

Since the June 17 fatal shooting of nine African Americans inside the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C., some six black churches have been torched throughout the South.

According to Al-Jazeera, three Muslim organizations—Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative, the Arab-American Association of New York and Ummah Wide—have created the "Respond With Love" campaign to raise money to help rebuild those churches burned since the massacre last month.

"To many, it is clear that these are attacks on black culture, black religion and black lives," the campaign's website reads.

"It's Ramadan, and we are experiencing firsthand the beauty and sanctity of our mosques during this holy month. All houses of worship are sanctuaries, a place where all should feel safe," it added.

While all of the church burnings are still under investigation and have not been reported as hate crimes, three are suspected arson attacks.

So far, the campaign has raised some $29,000 in just six days, and according to the site, once the campaign ends July 18, the group will disburse funds to the pastors of the churches in most need.   

"The American Muslim community cannot claim to have experienced anything close to the systematic and institutionalized racism and racist violence that has been visited upon African Americans," organizer Imam Zaid Shakir wrote on the website.

Shakir added: "We do, however, understand the climate of racially inspired hate and bigotry that is being reignited in this country. We want to let our African-American brothers and sisters know that we stand in solidarity with them during this dark hour. As a small symbol of that solidarity, during this blessed month of Ramadan ... "

Link to original article from The Root

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