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Posted: September 02, 2017

Religious groups unite to shelter Harvey survivors

Set of 3 religious symbols: islamic crescent, jewish David's star, christian cross
zanskar/Getty Images/iStockphoto
Set of 3 religious symbols: islamic crescent, jewish David's star, christian cross

By Gerald Hanks, Rare.us

Religious groups of different faiths have joined to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey.

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Houston’s Muslim community was one of the first to shelter flood victims, according to Rare.us. Numerous mosques became shelters as early as Saturday, Aug. 26, when some of the worst rains struck the city.

As Muslims prepare for one of their holiest days of the year, Eid al-Adha, or the festival of sacrifice, president of the Islamic Society of Greater Houston M.J. Khan promised evacuees would not be displaced during the prayer ceremonies.

RELATED: Volunteers step in as rescuers for Hurricane Harvey victims

“They (the evacuees) are the No. 1 priority,” said Khan. “They will not be disturbed, they will not be displaced, they will not be moved.”

Khan went so far as to say that evacuees sheltering in local mosques would remain unmoved even if members had to have their Friday prayer services in the parking lots, CBS News reported.

Congregations all over Dallas are also organizing relief efforts.

The Jewish Temple Emanu-El Dallas synagogue is asking its faithful to help find shelter for evacuees.

Churches are also working on donation drives, clearing out space for shelters and getting members together for volunteer missions to Houston and surrounding areas.

Lakewood Church, Houston’s biggest and most high-profile church, reportedly had its doors closed due to flooding earlier in the week. After several social media posts criticizing pastor Joel Osteen for failing to act, the church opened its doors, organized donation drives and coordinated volunteer efforts.

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RELATED: Joel Osteen's Lakewood Church opens as shelter after criticism in wake of Harvey


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