De Blasio Giving Muslims Meals for Ramadan After Threatening to Close NYC Churches
One of Ramadan's most noble callings is to feed the hungry,' de Blasio said
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced he would be providing the city's Muslim community with "over half a million meals" during the holy month of Ramadan.
De Blasio's announcement comes just a few weeks after he threatened to permanently ban churches from operating in the city due to the coronavirus.
De Blasio intends to provide 500,000 Halal meals during Ramadan, which will be distributed at 32 Department of Education buildings, according to Bloomberg.
"One of Ramadan's most noble callings is to feed the hungry," de Blasio said.
"To remember to be there for those in need. And that is now harder than ever now that people can't go to their mosques."
As Muslim New Yorkers prepare to start the holy month of Ramadan tonight, Mayor Bill de Blasio says the city is taking steps to support the Muslim community with Halal food programs.— CBS News (@CBSNews) April 23, 2020
“Over half a million meals will be distributed during Ramadan” for Muslim New Yorkers in need pic.twitter.com/d4PbFtGMa5
But The Mayor's tone was different for Christians and Jews.
"We all wish that the celebrations of Easter and Passover could have been so different," de Blasio said during the briefing.
The Mayor's previous harsh warning for other religions at the start of the COVID-19 outbreak in the city may unsettle those for the Christian and Jewish community.
In March, de Blasio said regarding closing churches and synagogues in the city:
“So, I want to say to all those who are preparing the potential of religious services this weekend – if you go to your synagogue, if you go to your church and attempt to hold services after having been told so often not to, our enforcement agents will have no choice but to shut down those services."
De Blasio: churches and synagogues that hold worship services may be closed permanently pic.twitter.com/kdUsdbP2YO— Matthew Schmitz (@matthewschmitz) March 29, 2020
“I don’t say that with any joy. It’s the last thing I would like to do because I understand how important people’s faiths are to them, and we need our faiths in this time of crisis, but we do not need gatherings that will endanger people," he added.
"You’ve been warned; you need to stop services, help people practice their faith in different ways, but not in groups, not in gatherings that could endanger people.”
Moreover, de Blasio's threat came hours before Jews were to meet for their weekly Shabbat gatherings.
What's more, a New York mosque remains open for daily prayers despite the state's current executive order broadly bans of all "non-essential gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason."