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In Brief

Muslim Builder Steps Up

A Jewish synagogue is rising in the hills of Arkansas, in large part because of the generosity of the project contractor: a Muslim immigrant from the West Bank.

Since 1981, members of Temple Shalom have practiced their faith where they could. The congregation bought a house to convert into a temple, but members abandoned their plans after residents complained that the synagogue would bring traffic.

The Reform congregation then bought new land -- and Fadil Bayyari got involved. The Springdale, Ark., general contractor agreed to waive his regular fee, saving Temple Shalom at least $250,000.

"Abraham is our forefather," Bayyari said. "We're first cousins. How we got to hate each other is beyond me."

-- Associated Press


Sculpture to Be Displayed

"My Sweet Lord," a nude chocolate sculpture of Jesus by artist Cosimo Cavallaro that angered Catholics before its Holy Week exhibit was canceled, returns Oct. 27 to a New York art gallery.

The April show was criticized for its timing and location. The exhibit, in a gallery visible to passersby on a Manhattan street, was set to open one day after Palm Sunday in the week that concluded with Easter Sunday.

The Catholic League says it won't protest this month's exhibit.

-- Associated Press

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