Spring Fundraiser: 14th Annual Multi-Faith Ramadan Iftar Dinner in the Holy Land

Donate to support the Abrahamic Reunion’s 14th Annual Multi-faith Ramadan Iftar Dinner in the Holy Land



The Abrahamic Reunion’s 14th Annual Multi-faith Ramadan Iftar Dinner

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment
before starting to improve the world.”
― Anne Frank, Anne Frank’s Tales from the Secret Annex
Dear Friends of Peace,

As a supporter of the Abrahamic Reunion, you already see how incredibly important it is to uphold the torch of optimism and hope amidst the prevailing darkness that insist peace is possible.

Did you know that for the last 14 years the Abrahamic Reunion has hosted a large Interfaith Ramadan Dinner each year? In this event, Christians, Jews, and Druze help our Muslim brothers and sisters to break their day of fasting with a joyous meal and ceremony.

2013 Iftar Celebration in Nazareth






(Left: 2007 Iftar in Yafia, Right: 2015 Iftar at Tantur)

Religion as a Force For Building Peace

Modeling the healing that is hoped for in the Holy Land is powerfully important work of the AR Peacemakers. By bringing religious people and leaders together to honor Ramadan and the Muslim faith, religion becomes a force for fellowship, harmony and ultimately, peace in the Holy Land. Our unity serves as an example of hope for the world.

Holding Hope and Unity Amidst Trauma and Separation

Separation and segregation born of decades of trauma keeps Muslim, Jewish, Druze, and Christian Palestinians and Israelis from interacting with each other deeply and safely. This is a cycle that creates further separation, distrust, division, hatred, blame, violence, terrorism, and oppression – the AR peacemakers steps in to bridge the divide between the various peoples of Israel/Palestine – all four major religions, major ethnicities, and citizenries.

“In safe, joyous gatherings, we have witnessed those have been hardened into a separatist view of life in Israel be overwhelmed by the love and beauty exhibited in this evening of coming together.”


Building Trust and Peace through Encounter

We who live in our highly-integrated Western culture can’t fully realize how rare and valuable meetings are that foster cultural and religious integration. In safe, joyous gatherings, we have witnessed those have been hardened into a separatist view of life in Israel be overwhelmed by the love and beauty exhibited in this evening of coming together. In response, they have changed long-held policies that have institutionalized separation.

(2014 and 2013 Ramadan Iftar celebrations in Nazareth)

Ramadan Karim!

A traditional greeting during Ramadan in Arabic is “Ramadan Karim!” meaning, “Generous and bountiful Ramadan!There is a long tradition of generosity and support during the time of Ramadan, especially for those in any kind of need, which is why we offer the dinner to all who participate across religions, political parties, and all across Israel and Palestine.

This year it seems so fitting that the dinner will be held just outside Nazareth, where the Prince of Peace grew up, hosted by our next Holy Land Muslim Co-Director Sheikh Khalid Abu Ras and attended by 200 people including cultural, political, and religious luminaries, and national and international media representatives.

The budget for this event including staff and lead-up is $15,000 – and we hope that you are able to contribute generously to further the cause of peace.

Besides providing the food (kosher and halal for all) and the venue, we also provide transportation for our Palestinian guests and for those traveling a great distance – we will rent a bus. We obtain permits for Palestinians to join the program, and the event requires people working for 6 weeks in advance to plan and execute.

A donation of $25 puts food on the table for one person, $75 or 75€ will fully support one of the 200 guests for this dinner and all that the AR puts into holding this event – $750 will support a table 10.

Please donate generously, and all of us in the AR and friends of the AR deeply appreciate your efforts.

It is helpful if you would spread the word to friends and family about our work.

In Peace,

David Less
Board Chairman of The Abrahamic Reunion

How To Donate

  • Online in America: Click Here
  • Germany / EU: Click Here
  • US Checks can be made to “The Abrahamic Reunion” and mailed to 2372 Arden Drive, Sarasota, FL 34232
  • UK / England:  Bank Transfer to Lloyds Bank A/c No: 47911460, Sort Code 30-98-97, Name: Abrahamic Reunion (England). Checks made out to Abrahamic Reunion can be posted to 3 Drummond Drive, Stanmore, Middx., HA7 3PF

A few more from the Archives…

Thank you for your support
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Holy Land Peacebuilding Journey Blog – Feb 2017

Hebron, Palestinian Territories. Photo: Daniel Aqleh.

Holy Land Peacebuilding Journey Blog – Hebron

from Kay Lamos, Participant on the Feb 2017 Peace Journey

Hebron, Israel checkpoint into Israeli-controlled Hebron. Photo: Christopher Miller

Yesterday we experienced the dual narrative tours of the Israeli and Palestinian sides of the Hebron experience up close and personal. It was certainly painful to hear both sides and feel the entrenched closeness to the pain of the stories and the hopelessness that is so often born of perpetuating those narratives.

Yet peace IS growing here perhaps because as the pressure intensifies in the world, in USA and here, it has the effect of bringing people together. In the states, Muslims, undocumenteds, LGBTs, Environmentalists, and so many more  are seeing the truth in aligning to overcome divisive stories or “alternative facts”. Peacemaker, Elias Jabbour, in his 80+ years of wisdom, arrives at an internal stance beyond story, perhaps in spite of  story, that tells us that we

In the Home of Peacemaker Elias Jabbour, Shefar’am. Left to Right: Elias Jabbour, Rabbi Gadi, Debra-sue Cope. Photo: Christopher Miller

either choose peace for our children and grandchildren, or we choose death. It becomes obvious there is no alternative.

I am praying that steadily more and more people find that place in themselves where Peace is the obvious and only alternative.

– Kay Lamos


February Abrahamic Reunion Peacebuilding Journey

The Abrahamic Reunion February 2017 Peacemaking Journey is a prolonged meeting of the AR International Advisory Board, the AR Directors, Coordinators, and Peacemakers, and the AR Israel’s Board, combined with several public events, some of which we hope to make available by Livestream, and certainly through this blog.

Dates to note (Exact timing TBA)

 – February 26th: Livestream Prayers for Peace with Indigenous Grandmothers in New Zealand + AR Peacemakers in Jericho, Israel. 11:30am EST, Click for Details
– February 28th: Livestream Cross-Border Prayer at the Gaza Border with the Abrahamic Reunion. Time TBA

For details on any of these events, attending, or joining online, please write to chris@abrahamicreunion.org

continue reading →

World Interfaith Harmony Week Message from David Less, Board Chairman

World Interfaith Harmony Week Message

from David Less, AR Co-Founder, Board Chairman

Dear friends of harmony,

Today is the beginning of the United Nations week of global interfaith harmony and it is imperative in these times to voice a spiritual and conscious perspective. When we see the news of the world and the happenings in the USA it does not seem we have learned from the past but instead reincarnated thoughts and emotions from our dark past. Instead of harmony we see apparent enmity and divisiveness and a subtle feeling of hopelessness seems to be creeping into the collective global mind. What can be done?

For people of faith, whatever be their religion or belief, the first action in time of crisis is inner. The actions of mindless and faithless governments and of hysterical religious fanatics and terrorists must act as a call to prayer for the faithful throughout the world. Real prayer develops an inner strength, clear vision and a strong will. It removes us from the world of duality and shallow emotions and enables us to marshal the inner forces of our own being in alignment with the strength and will of God.

Is that enough? For some people it is. Maintaining a state of prayer can create a battery of powerful spiritual energy that can be drawn upon by all those working in this world to create harmony and understanding instead of hegemony and fear. For others there is a need to bring actions into this world, to exemplify a spirit of balance and power in the midst of darkness and fear. From prayer comes inspiration and insight. Each of us must find our inner wisdom and guidance and we will know what to do. No one can own our soul and truly no one can inspire us as deeply as our own depth.

What is our work? Whether in the midst of outer demonstrations or discussions, in our writings or actions, in our thoughts and feelings, we must demonstrate peace and harmony, we must show positivity, hope and love. Most importantly, we must spread the atmosphere of love and harmony which, as every scripture says, is the perfume that signifies the presence of God.

I pray we are strong in God, powerful in hope, conscious with harmony, fearless and illuminated and that our faith becomes demonstrably present and alive. The vision of interfaith harmony must leave the world of dreams and we must make it a reality here on our exquisite planet.

With love and blessings,

David Less
For the Abrahamic Reunion

Donate Now To Support the Abrahamic Reunion

The Future Of Interreligious Leadership – A Visit To The Dialogue Institute

On August 3rd and 4th, Anna and I were invited by Sheikh Ghassan Manasra, International Co-Coordinator of the Abrahamic Reunion, to visit the Dialogue Institute (DI) of Temple University in Philadelphia to observe the last day of the program in Philadelphia.  The formal title of the program Sheikh Ghassan was hired to mentor for the DI is The Study of the U.S. Institutes (SUSI) for Student Leaders on Religious Pluralism in the United States. He worked with 20 graduate and post-graduate students, five each from Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, and Turkey, who were took part in the 5-week residential program. For the end of their program, each gave a short presentation on how the five weeks had changed them, what initiative they planned, and how they’d accomplish their idea when they returned to their home country.

When I sat down with the group of students early in the morning, my initial thought was that the day would be very informative – it actually turned out to be quite profound with deep insights into the possibility of transformation of consciousness in young people.  One of the first speakers, a young Muslim woman, said that when she came to the program, she really thought her belief system (Islam) and ideas were the best way to be close to God. After spending over a month in the company of Sunni and Shia Muslims, Christians, and Zoroastrians, she clearly stated that there are different and equal ways to come close to God.

DI photo

Rebecca Mays, Dialogue Institute Exec. Director (L) and Prof Leonard Swidler Phd, Dialogue Institute Founder (center)

What happened in that month with Sheikh Ghassan and the DI was that 20 young people from different backgrounds and cultures began to experience the joy and transformative power of true, empathetic human connection.  When a young woman from Turkey said, “I don’t know if I’m a student anymore, because my university was shut down, and many of my friends and professors are in jail following the recent attempted coup in Turkey,” all of us present without exception felt the bewilderment and heartfelt concern that this young woman was experiencing. It was as if everybody’s breath stopped at the same moment and took in the pain she was feeling.

The students’ projects were quite varied, and the visions deep. There was a project to educate people in a personal way of the need to end the practice of female genital mutilation. There were a number of projects to have meetings and conferences extolling the virtues of interfaith harmony and education.  There were projects to reverse some of the ecological disasters that came about as a result of war and conflict in their home countries. There was a project to supply surplus food to street children and couple it with basic education. This is just a sampling of the varied ideas and inspirations of these brave young people, that will be taken home and which they will seek to start.

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Dialogue Institute Students with Sheikh Ghassan at the White House

So what did Anna and I come away with at the end of a very long day? We experienced the renewed sense of hope that these young people were experiencing. They were not jousting with windmills, but instead creating concrete forms that could bring about true changes at the local and national levels. The challenges they will face are huge, but the power that they individually and collectively represent will be capable of overcoming those challenges.

“What stood out to me were the stories that these students told, and their leadership potential,” says Anna.  “To think that these young visionaries really could be the leaders of their countries in the next 20 years gives me a profound sense of hope.”

For me this was not just an educational experience, but instead a very deep, powerful, spiritual experience.


David and Anna Less tell the DI SUSI Students about the Abrahamic Reunion

At the invitation of Professor Leonard Swidler, founder of the Dialogue Institute and renowned interreligious dialogue scholar, and Rebecca Mays, ED of the Dialogue Institute, Anna and I were invited to share the work of the AR with the students, and how we have been successful in promoting the idea of using religion as a force for peace, rather than divisiveness. At the break, Anna and I were both swamped by questions and interest from the students.

Thanks to Prof. Swidler PhD and Rebecca Mays of the Dialogue Institute and Sheikh Manasra for inviting us to this program and to the Dialogue Institute for the photos.