Local residents took time Friday afternoon to show their support for the local Muslim community. Community members visited the Winkler mosque yesterday as a sign of solidarity in light of the horrific terrorist attack in New Zealand.
Winkler resident Kara Wieler took part Friday and says she’s had the privilege of getting to know a number of Muslim families through local Syrian refugee sponsorship groups.
“My prayer is that following the terrorist attack in New Zealand the Muslim community in Winkler and Canada can continue to feel safe and welcome here.”
She notes ways people can help include treating neighbours with warmth and kindness. “If you have a Muslim family living next door… bring them cookies or flowers and check in on them. A smile at the grocery store or a hand shake between men would show your care and respect."
The Pembina Valley Multifaith Council also encouraged local residents to reach out to their local Muslim community through a visit, card or flowers.
"Small acts like these can go a long way to offering encouragement to people who can feel isolated and afraid because of these attacks targeting their communities all over the world,” Pembina Valley Multifaith Council Chair Peter Cantelon says. “The Muslim community in the Pembina Valley is made up of great, contributing people. They are our neighbours and we should ensure they know they are loved.”
The Pembina Valley MultiFaith Council was formed just over a year ago, and currently has seven members, Peter Cantelon, Boota Singh Ubhi, Kelvin Dyck, Zahid Zehri, Vassan Aruljothi, Mandeep Saini, and Ted Peters. The group is a branch of the Manitoba MultiFaith Council, and is the only one outside of Winnipeg.
Yesterday, Portage-Lisgar MP Candice Bergen took to social media to share her reaction to the attacks. "Absolutely heartbroken at the horrific news from Christchurch, NZ. My condolences to anyone impacted by this terrorist attack & to the people of New Zealand. This hatred must be condemned and rejected in our society.”
New Zealand residents are reeling after Friday’s terror attack on two mosques in Christchurch.
The attack left 50 dead, while 36 people remain in hospital, 2 in critical condition.