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People of all faiths invited for dinner celebrating Ramadan in Harford

Members of the Harford County Muslim community will celebrate and host for their neighbors of all faiths a traditional Ramadan iftar, or fast-breaking dinner, on Saturday, July 27, at Masjid Al-Falaah in Abingdon.

The public is invited to join the local Muslim community for the dinner at the county's Muslim Center off Philadelphia Road. Reservations can be made by calling Dr. Rehan Khan, of Masjid Al-Falaah, at 202-236-7338.

"As more than one billion Muslims worldwide celebrate Ramadan by fasting and appreciating the blessings given to us, it is equally important for the American Muslim community to reach out to our neighbors as an example of true Islamic ideals," Kahn said. "We are here to show our friends and neighbors that American Muslims will continue to be contributing members of our society."

Ramadan is the month on the Islamic lunar calendar during which Muslims abstain from food, drink and other sensual pleasures from the break of dawn to sunset. The fast is performed to learn discipline, self-restraint and generosity, while obeying God's commandments, Kahn said. Fasting (along with the declaration of faith, daily prayers, charity, and pilgrimage to Mecca) is one of the Five Pillars of Islam.

The end of Ramadan will be marked by communal prayers called "Eid ul-Fitr," or Feast of the Fast-Breaking, on Aug. 8.

There are an estimated 140 Muslim families in Harford County, Kahn said, and some 7 million Muslims nationwide. Islam is one of the fastest growing religions in this country and around the world, he said.

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