At this point, Biryani-loving American comedian Jeremy McLellan really doesn’t need any introductions. When he isn’t on stage being absolutely hilarious, he’s active on social media, reminiscing the days he spent in Pakistan.
It’s kinda like he took a bit of Pakistan with him.
McLellan has a HUGE following on his social media platforms. Many of the people that follow him are Pakistanis as well.
Now, we all know that “with great power comes great responsibility.” And McLellan knows that too. He’s using his platform to raise awareness about Lent while discussing Ramadan alongside. The benefits of this are clearly two-fold. His non-Muslim audience can gain an insight into what Ramadan is about. Similarly, his Muslim audience can be better informed about Lent.
Here’s the super informative post that Jeremy McLellan shared:
Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, which is the beginning of Lent, which is like the Christian Ramadan. Or maybe Ramadan is the…
In this post, he went over some of the main differences between Ramadan and Lent:
Muslims fast during Ramadan, but Christians are divided about Lent. Catholics do it, or at least they’re supposed to, while Protestants do it when they want to play dress up and pretend to be Catholic.
Christian fasting during Lent isn’t *required* every day. It’s only required on Ash Wednesday and Fridays when we restrict meals to one normal meal and (if we must) two smaller ones that can’t add up to a normal one. We also can’t eat meat on those days, but we can eat fish, which is supposedly not meat. Ramadan lasts 30 days, while Lent lasts 47. That’s because it’s 40 days plus the 7 days of Holy Week.
Christian fasting during Lent isn’t divided by time. During Ramadan, Muslims eat in the morning (suhur) and evening (iftar) but eat nothing in between and also don’t drink water. Christians can drink whatever we want, which seems weird because sometimes you see Christians drinking protein shakes and claiming it’s not a meal. Those people are cheaters.
However, he also went on to highlight some similarities:
Pregnant ladies are excused from fasting in both religions, so all my food will go to my wife. Both religions emphasize doing good works, giving alms, prayer, and extra devotion during Lent and Ramadan.
Both Lent and Ramadan end in a feast. For Muslims, it ends with Eid. For Christians, it ends with Easter. It’s always nice to invite people from other religions to celebrate with you and eat good food.
He also added the following:
Jeremy’s message to his audience is extremely important. But where do we, as Pakistanis, fit in?
Though Christians in Pakistan are a minority, the recognition of their rights – primarily by respecting their religion – is highly important. However, we can only hope to respect minorities once we have an understanding of their traditions, values, and practices. Therefore, we owe Jeremy McLellan some gratitude for using his platform to keep his followers well-informed.
Awareness is always the key to opening mental locks, thereby paving a path for empathy. Here’s hoping Jeremy’s post served as that source of awareness. Moreover, here’s hoping that the Christian community stays blessed through this Holy month.
Cover image via Facebook/Jeremy McLellan Comedy