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Masjid-e-Ali Celebrates Eid With Gift To Franklin Food Bank

Masjid-e-Ali co-founder Alex Kharazi, center, is flanked by the Franklin Food Bank’s Kevin McGuinness, left, and Mike Rossi.

A $7,000 donation to the Franklin Food bank highlighted the celebration of Eid-al-Fitr June 5 at the Masjid-e-Ali mosque on Cedar Grove Lane.

Eid-al-Fitr is the celebration marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. During Ramadan, Muslims must fast between dawn and dusk.

The gift was presented to the Food Bank’s Development Director, Mike Rossi, and Board of Trustee member Kevin McGuinness by Alex Kharazi, the mosque’s co-founder and vice president.

The Food Bank, Kharazi told congregants, “provides a very special service for the community.”

Kharazi said he asked Food Bank management how much it costs to sponsor one family of three for one month; the answer was $84.

” A couple months ago we asked any community member who wishes to help to please come forward,” he said. “I’m very happy to let you know that three families came and sponsored for the entire year three families, they each donated $1,000. And 50 others from our community, they said we want to sponsor at least for one month.”

“When I was there a couple of weeks ago, I saw quite a few Muslims were there,” Kharazi said. “I saw people from our community there to get help.”

Rossi thanked the mosque’s members for the gift, and said that the Food Bank will “be able to use these funds to feed many families.”

“Because of the generosity of your community and others in Franklin Township, we are going to be able to expand our services to include specialized foods such as Halal meat,” he said. “We’ll be able to distribute much more diversified products to those families in need.”

Earlier in the day, the mosque’s Imam, Rizwan Rizvi, implored his congregation to keep with them the tenets of Ramadan throughout the year.

“We have purified our souls, let’s not wash away our good deeds and revert to our merry old ways,” he said.

“Let the masjid still overflow with worshipers, let the Quran be the most essential part of our lives, instead of letting it gather dust on our shelves,” he said. “Our condition should be better than before the beginning of Ramadan. It is not just a ritual that provides us with an excuse to enjoy ourselves, it represents the most important values and participating in them.”

“Unfortunately, many of us abstain from sins during this month of Ramadan, but come Eid, we go back to the way we were before,” he said. “The CDs and the tracks that we were playing in our cars that had prayers and the Quran, now they’re thrown into the back in the back cases and replaced with those which are not Halal.”

“The forbidden places from which we had abstained from going this whole month are in fact the places where we go to celebrate Eid,” he said. “We must understand that the holy month of Ramadan is a spiritual university for us.”

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