Interfaith Event Celebrates Passover, Easter in Fort Greene

New Yorkers are celebrating both Passover and Easter this weekend. An interfaith event held in Brooklyn gave people a chance to observe the holidays together and advocate for peace and social justice. NY1’s Mahsa Saeidi filed this story.

Their first night's Seder was spent with close friends, but for the second night Harold and Robbie Geller wanted to try something different.

“For me, this is the first time to experience something like this. It's always good to be with close family and friends but this gives a different perspective,” said Robbie Geller.

“It's the night in which Dr. King was killed, it's Passover and Easter,” said spiritual leader Amichai Lau-Lavie.

People of different faiths filled the Brooklyn Academy of Music to celebrate, form relationships and start a conversation.

"This has been a tough year for race issues, for sexuality diversity issues, for gender issues,” said Lau-Lavie.

“Obviously black lives matter and what has been happening for young people of color, not only throughout the city, but throughout this world,” said Rev. Dr. John Vaughn, vice president of Auburn Theological Seminary.

Every day, Vaughn works to equip leaders of faith for social justice. He says events like these are an opportunity to reach different communities and bring about change.

“I'm a father of two young boys, and so I want a future for those young boys that is just, where they feel safe walking down the street,” said Vaughn.

For Debbie Almontaser, it was a night to pray for the safe return of her daughter who is in battle torn Yemen and unable to leave due to intense fighting.

“I'm extremely concerned as a mother. I'm extremely concerned for her and for the hundreds of other Yemeni Americans who are stranded there and I just pray for her safety nightly and daily,” Almontaser said.

This is the first year leaders across faiths have come together for Freedom Feast, but based on the success of the night it most likely will not be their last. 

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