Trinity College Hosts Community Iftar Featuring Guest Speaker Rep. Maryam Khan

Iqra Athar ’26

News Editor

On Monday, March 25, Trinity College Chapel and the Muslim Student Association hosted their annual community iftar, welcoming attendees at 6:15 p.m. for an evening filled with speeches, prayer and communal dining. This event, open and free to students, faculty, staff and the broader public, aimed to foster unity and understanding across diverse communities while supporting a charitable cause. Donations were collected for Hands on Hartford to provide halal food to individuals and families experiencing food insecurity.

Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, is celebrated by Muslims to commemorate the revelation of the Holy Quran. Iftar, the meal eaten by Muslims each evening after sundown, breaks the day’s fast. The evening at the chapel began with a welcome at 6:30 p.m., featuring addresses from Rev. Marcus G. Halley, college chaplain and dean of Spiritual and Religious Life, and Abdelrahman Nassar ’24 and Jana Safy ’25, co-presidents of the Muslim Student Association. They introduced the evening’s speaker, Nawal Khurram, who subsequently welcomed Rep. Maryam Khan, state representative and deputy majority leader, to the podium.

In her speech, Nawal highlighted the significance of Khan’s election as the first Muslim member of the Connecticut House, emphasizing her role as a trailblazer for women and Muslims in leadership. Khan, elected in a special election in March 2022 to represent the 5th District, has focused her efforts on education, community infrastructure and inclusion, drawing from her background as Vice President of the Windsor Board of Education.

Khan shared her experiences as a Muslim and Pakistani-American in Connecticut, underlining the importance of community support, education and justice. She spoke of Ramadan as a time of reflection and giving back, a sentiment that resonated deeply with the diverse audience gathered at the chapel, adorned with Ramadan lights and a balloon arch for the occasion.

As sunset approached, Nassar led the call to the Maghrib prayer, signaling the end of the day’s fast. Attendees then broke their fast with dates and drinks, with Muslims forming rows in the side chapel to offer prayer in congregation. This was followed by dinner, featuring a menu of pita and hummus, baba ghanoush, veggie samosas, chicken biryani, chicken kebab wraps, spicy falafel wraps and baklava, with vegetarian options available.

The community iftar brought together Muslim and non-Muslim students, alumni and faculty, many of whom were accompanied by their families, fostering conversations and connections over shared meals. The evening concluded with sparklers, sponsored by Student Leadership and Engagement (SLE), lighting up the Quad at 8 p.m. to create a joyful and celebratory atmosphere. Additionally, the Chapel offered suhoor packets with snacks for Muslims fasting the next day.

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