Nearly 50 county residents of differing faiths volunteered their time to clean up a historic Underground Railroad stop in Germantown Sunday as part of the first Muslim-Jewish Day of Friendship.
Event organizers and friends Saqib Ali of North Potomac and Jeff Waldstreicher of Bethesda planned the project in an effort to create relationships between the Muslim and Jewish communities throughout Montgomery County.
Ali, a member of the Montgomery County Muslim Council, said he hopes Sunday's program will allow people to start lasting friendships and show the ability of these groups to come together for a common good.
Ali said the similarities between Muslims and Jews are far greater than their differences, yet the groups rarely come together.
"In Montgomery County, Muslims and Jews share the same neighborhoods, schools, playgrounds and workplaces," he said. "I believe that we can be a model showing that these two communities are eager to get along, in spite of world events. We want to show that we are friends and that we want to work together to improve our community."
Waldstreicher said he and Ali wanted to create an opportunity to introduce members of both groups in a way that would be most comfortable for those in attendance. Political discussions were discouraged...