As the new moon signals the holy month of Ramadan, I extend warm greetings to Muslims throughout the United States and around the world.
The Islam that we know is a faith devoted to the worship of one God, as revealed through The Holy Qu'ran. It teaches the value and importance of charity, mercy, and peace. And it is one of the fastest growing religions in America, with millions of American believers today.
The American Muslim community is as varied as the many Muslim communities across the world. Muslims from diverse backgrounds pray together in mosques all across our great land. And American Muslims serve in every walk of life, including our armed forces.
The Holy Qu'ran says: "Piety does not lie in turning your face to the East or West. Piety lies in believing in God." (2:177). Americans now have turned to acts of charity, sending relief to the Afghan people, who have suffered for so many years. America is proud to play a leading role in the humanitarian relief efforts in Afghanistan, through airdrops and truck convoys of food, medicine, and other much-needed supplies. And today we are committed to working for the long-term reconstruction of that troubled land.
We send our sincerest wishes to Muslims in America and around the world for health, prosperity, and happiness during Ramadan and throughout the coming year.