The second day of the conference was kicked off by a visit to a synagogue in the centre of Vienna by both Muslim and Jewish participants. The president of the Jewish Community in Austria and the community Rabbi discussed the similarities both in Islam and Judaism, which was followed by a guided tour of the Temple. For many, it was their first time visiting a synagogue.
For the rest of the afternoon, participants joined their committee groups; an interactive discussion that is run by 2-3 committee chairs who facilitate discussion between participants in order to ensure dialogue and mutual respect among one another.
In the evening, both Muslim and Jewish participants were encouraged to come together to celebrate Kabbalat Shabbat. The participants shared some personal stories and traditions, sang songs and lit candles together. Prayers were recited from the Siddur, the Jewish prayer book, and were translated to English and explained further. Some of the Muslim participants even wore a Kippah in order to really get into the spirit of Kabbalat Shabbat! At dinner, after having exchanged blessings, Jewish participants demonstrated the self-cleansing process before breaking bread.
Shalom and Salam everybody!