When a friend is insulted, I too feel the anguish. When a friend is treated with disrespect and acerbity, I too feel the pangs of thorns as much as my friend. When a friend is brutalized, my dignity is tarnished alongside of theirs. That is what friendship is about - feeling empathy with another.
When a friend offers an open door of hospitality and generosity, I too rejoice knowing I am accepted with integrity. When a friend invites me in openness to share who they are and what they believe, I welcome the opportunity to grow in wisdom and trust. When a friend reaches out to me to let me know what is in their soul and what makes them walk with dignity, I too walk with greater dignity.
Respect and acceptance of differences for life is the basis of community and the core of Canadian values.
I pray that all Muslims, and especially Imam Saad Bahr and his Masjid Al-Hidayah and Islamic Cultural Centre, be blessed as we share friendship one with another.
May those who prey upon another's identity with senseless pranks or vandalism that verges upon hate learn to respect our neighbours.