Local documentary asks: Why can't a Muslim and an atheist be friends?
What happens when a Muslim and an atheist walk the streets of Rochester together while overtly expressing their religious beliefs?
That social experiment was recently played out for a mini documentary by the Rochester Experience, a local video series focusing on arts and culture.
The documentary features Regina Mustafa, founder of Community Interfaith Dialogue on Islam, and Jeffrey Jurewicz, a self-described atheist. Sporting "Muslim" and "Atheist" t-shirts, the two strolled around town to test the public's reaction and engage in conversation.
For Jurewicz and Mustafa, the goal was to make a statement to counter the belief that Muslims and non-believers cannot love and respect one another.
"What's important is that you live with love in your hearts," says Jurewicz. "That's why this is called 'Muslim Loves Atheist, Atheist Loves Muslim.' Because we have love in our hearts, and we have love in our hearts for everybody — and we don't want to let anything divide us in that sense."
You can watch the full video below.
Mustafa also holds a monthly faith talk show at the Rochester Public Library. You can learn more about that here. Additionally, her organization is hosting an event next month at the Rochester Civic Theatre titled "Hijab for a Day," which follows different women's experiences covering up with the veil.
(Cover photo: Screenshot / Rochester Experience)