Louisville Jews and Muslims will embrace each other today — metaphorically and actually — as members of each community, and the greater Louisville community, come together at one another’s religious sites to preach unity and reject hatred.
Jews and non-Jews were at the Louisville Islamic Center, 4007 River Road, Friday afternoon — the Muslim sabbath — joining faith leaders from around Louisville to form a “human chain” around the Islamic Center to show support for the Muslims living here.
“The Louisville Muslim community is feeling particularly vulnerable in reaction to President Trump’s executive orders related to immigrants and refugees,” according to a release circulated by the Jewish Community Relations Council. “Furthermore, the rhetoric being heard in many unofficial circles has the Muslim community fearful for their future well being.
“This is an opportunity to demonstrate to them and the rest of our community that we stand with them and against suspicion and intolerance. We will form this ‘circle of love’ during their afternoon prayer service and we are then invited inside the mosque for refreshments,” the release added.
This won’t be the only “circle of love” Friday.
At 6:30 p.m. — the beginning of the Jewish sabbath — members of the Muslim Americans for Compassion will be at Temple Shalom, 4615 Lowe Road, to worship with the congregation and to make their own gesture of solidarity withe Louisville’s Jews. Dr. Muhammad Babar will be speaking during services.
Last week, during International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Temple Shalom and Keneseth Israel Congregation received hateful anti-Semitic voice mail messages. The police are investigating.