Claret Parish sponsors community iftar PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 20 July 2013 11:18

As a  gesture of solidarity with the Muslim community currently observing their holy month of Ramadan, the San Antonio Ma. Claret Parish for the first time sponsored an Iftar celebration or the breaking of the fast last July 14.

The celebration of Iftar was held at the Parish Lay Leaders Formation Center and was participated in by some Muslim residents in the  Claret Parish. Also in attendance were some of the parish workers, parishioners and Claretian missionaries.

The activity was initiated by the parish service committee, which is headed by Fr. Angel C. Calvo, CMF.

Fr. Angel Angeles, CMF, the Claret parish priest, in his welcome message said that the “it is such a special moment” because this is the first time that the parish held this activity. Fr. Angeles also wished that “may we – Christians and Muslims - continue to live in peace and harmony.”

Muslim communities all other the world (ummah) are observing this month of Ramadan during which they are performing 30 days of fasting from food, drink and frivolities.  Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam. Iftar or the breaking of the fast occurs between the separation of the day and the coming of the dusk. The Iftar celebration in the Parish was at exactly 6:15.

“Iftar is very important to us when it is already the breaking of the fast because we in the family are celebrating an occasion as we gather together as one family to partake the bounty,” recounted by Suzzane J. Ibno, one of the participants during the Iftar celebration.

During the breaking of the fast the Christian and Muslim participants shared in the ritual partaking the “dulang” or the Muslim foods.

Fr. Calvo underscored the meaning of the celebration of Iftar in the parish, saying that “the community of Christians and Muslims come together to make a real community”.

Fr. Calvo has been spending his mission in Mindanao, especially in Zamboanga City and Basilan Province for a few decades already, organizing communities to foster interfaith and intercultural relationship. He is also the chair of the caused-oriented consortium  Zamboanga Basilan Integrated Development Alliance, Inc. (ZABIDA) whose mandate is to provide human security through providing low cost housing to the marginalized sector, livelihood programs to children and women, installing potable water system, providing sustainable and organic agriculture to lowland and upland farmers and organizing interfaith groups for adults and children who will advocate for peace and solidarity.

He also emphasized to the participants that parish mission is to be “a matured community of disciples open to interfaith dialogue.” Albert F. Arcilla/Peace Advocates Zamboanga