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Volunteers in Singapore help Muslim neighbors during prayer gathering

August 20, 2019

Rows of men wearing long shirts and skull caps bowing on prayer carpets with their heads, hands, and feet touching the ground; discarded sandals can be seen nearby.


Last week  Shinnyo-en’s temple in Singapore made headlines for volunteering as traffic marshals during prayers at the neighboring  Abdul Razak Mosque on the occasion of the Eid al-Adha celebration. In recent years more congregants have been coming to the mosque, and due to a lack of space, they would often end up praying by the pavement or on the road which raised concerns about safety. This year, the mosque obtained permission for a partial road closure. Shinnyo-en offered volunteers to man the roadblock.

“We were so happy about that,” said Secretary of the Abdul Razak Mosque, Mr. Syed, adding that they never thought that people from other communities would be willing to help.

Ms. Tan Pia Tiang, manager of the Shinnyo-en temple in Singapore said, “Singapore is a religiously diverse country with many commonalities, one of them being prayer. We understand how important this [celebration] is to our Muslim friends, and wanted to volunteer to help so they did not have to forgo that”.

This act of service to others, irrespective of background or faith traditions, embodies the Shinnyo members’ dedication to be of service to the community and Shinnyo-en’s commitment to interfaith cooperation and action. It shows that even in a metropolis like Singapore neighbors helping neighbors is what matters.

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