La Cañada residents Connie and Essy Alamdari, opened their home to a group of young adults as they celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr, the end of Ramadan.
Ramadan is a time of retrospect and life renewing for those in the Islamic faith. This year it began on Sept. 12 and ended on Oct. 11. During the time of Ramadan, members of the faith fast from sunrise to sunset. At the end a great celebration, Eid-ul-Fitr, similar to the Thanksgiving holiday, is a time when friends and families get together to share how grateful they are for their health, strength and opportunities.
Alamdari, along with members of the La Cañada Flintridge Islamic Congregation including Levent Akbarut and his wife Nahid Ansari, hosted a potluck dinner with members of Muslims Establishing Communities in America [MECA].
“Members of MECA are young adults undergraduates that are single, married, or married with young children,” Akbarut said. “They [MECA] hold monthly pot luck dinners in homes in Los Angeles and Orange County.”
Akbarut said that the group usually has a theme for dinners that coincides with their faith goals. Last month they had an interfaith dinner in West Los Angeles where they joined with those of the Jewish faith and celebrated Ramadan and the Jewish high holy days.
“For 9/11 MECA was involved in putting together the Interfaith for Homeless [project],” Akbarut said.
Through this project they gathered canned goods and other food for the homeless.
The group was established in 2005 and at present only has members in Southern California. However, Akbarut said that they are hoping to become a nationwide movement.
Eid-ul-Fitr was actually the week before the La Cañada potluck but the choice was made to celebrate a week later to allow members to be with their families.
“[The night] was a celebration. We prayed our sunset prayers and ate,” Akbarut said.
After dinner, the members read passages from the Koran and discussed what each passage meant.