The LGBT Synagogue Standing Up for Muslim Rights by Protecting an Islamic Center During Friday Prayers
Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum fought for inclusion in the 1970s with the LGBT community and she is bringing that know-how to an Islamic Center in Greenwich Village.
“On the Friday after the election, I woke up, knowing that the major communal prayer in the Muslim community is Friday afternoons, thinking to myself, ‘What does it feel like to be Muslim in America today?’” Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum told The Daily Beast. As the leader of a predominantly gay synagogue, Kleinbaum and her congregants know what it’s like to be marginalized, both as Jews and as gay people. That first week after Donald Trump was elected president, she went down to the Islamic Center at New York University with three colleagues and makeshift signs, telling their Muslim neighbors that Congregation Beit Simchat Torah stands with them. Members and friends of CBST have gathered at the Islamic Center every week since to share a similar message. And the synagogue even invited Khalid Latif, the imam, to be the featured speaker at their Pride Month Friends & Family Shabbat.