Aren’t these the same folks who condemn “traditions of men” like weekly fasting and abstinence? NFTU
(AP) Like Muslims worldwide, Ben Ries has refrained from food and drink from sunrise to sundown in an act of self-restraint during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, which ends this weekend.
Each evening, the 31-year-old Ries joins Muslim families in a room above a hardware store in Bellingham, Wash., to find fellowship and break the fast with a handful of dates and a welcome glass of water.
Only Ries is not a Muslim. He is pastor of 70-member Sterling Drive Church of Christ and a self-described committed Christian who just a few weeks ago had to turn to Google to find a Muslim in his community.
Ries is among a small group of Christians who’ve joined well-known evangelical author and speaker Brian McLaren in observing a Ramadan fast, opening a new chapter in interfaith relations between two traditions often at odds.
To McLaren and his Christian and Muslim fasting partners, it’s a neighborly gesture of solidarity that deepens their respective faiths and sends a message about finding peace and common ground.