NCJW and AMMWEC at the Poor People’s Campaign Moral March on Washington

National Council of Jewish Women was proud to be anchor partners for the PPC. In addition to speaking about poverty, NCJW CEO Sheila Katz joined Anila Ali, American Muslim & Multifaith Women’s Empowerment Council CEO, to close the event in an important moment of mourning and joint solidarity. Bishop William J. Barber II, leader of the Poor People’s Campaign, introduced them.

Sheila: Shabbat shalom. I’m Sheila Katz, CEO of the National Council of Jewish Women.

Anila: I’m Anila Ali, the CEO of the American Muslim and Multifaith Women’s Empowerment Council. As-salamu alaykum.

Sheila: We stand together, arm in arm, united for love, peace, and justice.

Anila: Alhamdolillah. I am a Muslim, and I know my religion strictly prohibits the killing of any noncombatants. The brutal killing of over 1,000 women, children, and families by Hamas in Israel on October 7th is an unspeakable tragedy. My heart is heavy with sorrow as I mourn each precious life lost, and I extend my sympathy with their grieving families and communities. Every single life taken is an irreplaceable loss.

Sheila: I also mourn for every Palestinian civilian, including thousands of innocent children, who have been killed since. Each person was precious, holy, and deserving of a life filled with peace and dignity. My heart aches for the immense loss and suffering endured by their families and communities.

The value of each human life transcends all boundaries. In both Jewish and Muslim traditions, every life is precious and sacred. Judaism teaches us, B’tzelem Elohim, that we are all created in the image of the divine.

Anila: Like Judaism and Christianity, Quran says if you save a life, you have saved humanity. Islam, my religion, calls for the sanctity of every human life. In fact, the sanctity of life and the human body is one of the most important aspects of Islam. That’s what completes our faith and makes us Muslim.

Sheila: Together, we want a negotiated agreement accepted by both Hamas and Israel’s government to end this war, release the hostages, and increase humanitarian aid. Every second counts to save more lives. 

Anila: Amen, release the hostages and let’s build peace.

Together, we mourn the impact of poverty across this country. Together, we commit to safety, equity, and justice for Palestinians, Israelis, and all people everywhere. Together, we dream for the children to thrive with their neighbors. May Allah grant us the day that we see more books than bombs in the hands of children. Liyakun as-salam wa al-hubb fi qulubina. May peace and love be in our hearts.

Sheila: May we all soon know peace. Shalom.

Anila: As-salamu alaykum. Ameen sum mameen ya rabul Alameen.

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