CAIR-MO | St. Louis Public Radio

CAIR-MO

Emily Woodbury | St. Louis Public Radio

Since 2012, Faizan Syed has been a key figure in Missouri’s Muslim community, serving as the executive director of the state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. When he first started, CAIR-MO was a small organization with just one board member and a budget of a little more than $10,000. But the group has since become a leading voice in the community. 

Syed recently left the organization to become the new executive director of CAIR-Dallas-Fort Worth. Taking over as director this month is Mojda Sidiqi, who was previously CAIR-MO’s communications coordinator. There will be a farewell banquet and fundraiser for Syed at the organization’s 7th Anniversary Gala on Friday, Nov. 8. 

On Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air, both Sidiqi and Syed joined host Sarah Fenske to discuss the organization’s past and its future. 

A rainbow shines overhead the Kaaba while Muslims are on hajj, the annual Islamic pilgrimage.
Faiza Mushtaq

Earlier this month, millions of Muslims made their way to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, to participate in the Islamic pilgrimage known as hajj. It’s one of the largest annual gatherings, and there, Muslims who represent hundreds of ethnicities and languages give up their normal lives and dedicate the week to devout worship. 

The journey is made over five days during the last month of the Islamic calendar, and Muslims who are physically and financially able to make the trip to Saudi Arabia are required to do so at least once in their lifetime. 

The hajj is seen as one of the five pillars of Islam, and its end is marked with one of the two Islamic holidays, Eid al-Adha. On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Sarah Fenske explored the religious obligation and what it entails.