Muslim and Christian women will work together sprucing up the dining room at First Step’s domestic abuse shelter this month.
They’ll clean, polish, buff and redecorate the space from ceiling to floor Friday-Saturday, April 29-30, in Wayne, Michigan, while also strengthening friendships and furthering the mission of their group, Common Ground Gathering.
“At this point, it’s to make a difference in the community,” Hasina Abdu explained their goal as a combined Muslim-Christian gathering. “We are building bridges while making a difference. The Canton-Plymouth community can only get stronger if we work together, if we work in collaboration.”
Nancy Sullivan of Plymouth, another member, looks forward to rolling up her sleeves and working with her Christian and Muslim friends.
“I’m really excited about it. When you’re scrubbing cabinets side by side, what better way to get to know someone,” she said.
Abdu, a Canton resident, is the outreach director for the Muslim Community of Western Suburbs in Canton and Sullivan is a longtime member of First Presbyterian Church of Plymouth. Common Ground Gathering is a loosely-organized group of approximately 50 women from all backgrounds and of all ages who attend the mosque and the church.
“Initially the mosque held an open invitation for people to attend a forum after the shootings a year ago in North Carolina of three Muslim students,” said Sullivan, who attended the event with her husband. “Hasina happened to be this lovely woman seated behind me. She and I exchanged contact information. We made a commitment that we would develop a relationship. That led to lunch.”