Lent just began this week, and Christians everywhere have been deciding what they’ll be doing as penance in preparation for Easter.
But Christians aren’t the only ones joining in this year. Muslims have been taking to social media to say that they’ll be giving up something for Lent as well this year. Why? In order to show of solidarity with Christians, particularly in light of the recent murder of 21 Coptic Christians by Islamic State militants.
Bassel Riche, an American Muslim, came up with the idea and the hashtag #Muslims4Lent and has been promoting the campaign through Twitter and Facebook.
“Thus far, the reaction from Muslims and Christians alike has been wonderful and overwhelmingly positive,” Riche said to The Huffington Post. “Many of my Christian friends have responded showing their support and appreciation for these interfaith efforts. I hope this is just the beginning.”
He told The Independent that he was inspired to start the campaign after non-Muslim students joined in with the Muslim Students Association’s Ramadan Fast-a-Thon at his former college, the University of Houston.
Here are some examples of Muslims showing their support for #Muslims4Lent:
— Eid.Pray.Love. (@EidPrayLove) February 17, 2015
— Jaweed Kaleem (@jaweedkaleem) February 9, 2015
— Eid.Pray.Love. (@EidPrayLove) February 3, 2015
— Brown Girl Magazine (@BrownGirlMag) February 19, 2015
— mary judkins (@mouthymary) February 20, 2015
— Megan Harris (@meganfmharris) February 19, 2015
— خالد السهيل (@kalsuhail) February 19, 2015