Search This Blog

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Like churches, mosque splits happen, too.

Imam Hassan Al-Qazwini is the most prominent Shia Imam in Michigan, and until recently headed up the Islamic Center of America mosque in Dearborn. 

It appears that ethnic infighting played a role his ouster--he is Iraqi, and the ICA is largely Lebanese.

Still, an interesting look at one of Michigan's unique communities.

Outside, the walls of the Lebanese-American center had been spray-painted sometime over the past 24 hours with anti-Iraqi graffiti aimed at denigrating Qazwini, who is of Iraqi descent: “The Iraqi Center of Baghdad,” read one insult. It was a symbol of the lingering tensions that remain over his forced departure from the Islamic Center.

But despite the vandalism, Al-Qazwini garnered a massive show of support that day as he talked about the importance of educating the public about Islam. That night happened to be what is called in Islam the Night of Power, when one’s prayers and good deeds are believed to be worth more than those done in 83 years.
Jabbing his finger in the air to stress his points, Al-Qazwini cited a survey in which “62% of Americans ... have a negative view of our religion.”

“They think that Muslims are either terrorists or they support terrorists,” he said. “Who’s going to change that perception? You. Us. ... Allah will not change any people’s conditions unless they change their own conditions. We cannot sit aside and blame the Jews, continue to blame the Zionists for our pain.”
A few minutes later, he started a bidding process to help raise money for the new mosque. It’s common during the Night of Power for congregations to raise money.

“I need 10 hands, 10 people, brothers and sisters, who would donate $10,000,” he said.

In 15 minutes, Al-Qazwini raised $129,000 for the mosque.

No comments:

Post a Comment