Source: USA TODAY
On November 27, 2002 USA TODAY reported that "the volunteers who serve meals at the First Congregational Church in Washington, D.C., also give sustenance to another ideal -- this is a country where Muslims and Christians live and work together. Imam Johari Abdel-Malik and the Rev. Graylan Hagler conceived the idea of a Muslim-Christian volunteer effort early this fall. 'We are a community under siege after Sept. 11,' says Abdel-Malik, who is a Muslim chaplain at Howard University. 'We need to come out of our bubble. This is a good place to start. I challenged the Reverend to find an effort to help the homeless.' Says Hagler: 'There's no better way to tear down walls than to work together. And that's what we're doing here.' The help couldn't have come at a better time, advocates for the poor say. The weak economy has increased demand at food banks across the USA, according to volunteer organizations."