Tania Mian and Jay Israel peered at the window opening and the wood around it with interest.
The pair reframed the old window to make way for replacement windows, and Mian noted that Israel brought a lot of expertise to the collaborative effort.
“Once you’ve done it, it’s easy,” he told her.
The Muslim woman and Jewish man were part of a special Interfaith Alliance of Oklahoma team that participated in a Rebuilding Together OKC project on April 14 in south Oklahoma City. They were among 45 people who took part of the Interfaith Alliance’s Many Beliefs Serving Together crew.
Like its predecessor called Beyond Belief, Many Beliefs Serving Together has a mission to foster interfaith friendships and to practice cooperation by serving the community together.
Julian Killiard and Ayesha Sattar, members of the Many Beliefs committee, served as team captains for the recent Rebuilding Together project.
“I think this is the Golden Rule in action,” Killiard said. “Everyone has the Golden Rule in their religion — the wording is just a little different.”
Killiard said the group worked with people from other organizations to do window reframing and installation, exterior and interior painting, installation of a new kitchen floor, installation of bathroom safety bars and installation of a new toilet at a woman’s home in the Akers Park neighborhood.
He said the Many Beliefs group that came together for the home refurbishment project included Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and some people like himself who do not ascribe to any religion.
“We get involved in a lot of charitable events around the city, and we try to attract as many different kinds of people as we can to do good works,” Killiard said.
Jermaine Peterson, who is a Christian, said he liked being part of the interfaith team.
“There’s a lot of good work that needs to be done in our community,” he said. “I enjoy getting to work with people who believe different than me and getting to know them.”
Sattar, who is Muslim, said the Many Beliefs committee wanted to do some different community service projects and decided the Rebuilding Together OKC project was worthwhile for many reasons.
She said if there is enough interest in becoming involved with the home refurbishment project, they will try to participate next year.