News Agencies – July 14, 2012
Muslims on Prince Edward Island are celebrating the opening of the province’s first permanent mosque. They’re hoping the new $700,000 place of worship on MacAleer Drive will attract new immigrants to the Island. Currently, about 100 Muslim families live on the Island.
“We have been dreaming for this space for the past 40 years,” said Dr. Najam Chishti, president of the Muslim Society of P.E.I. “I have lived 32 years on the Island. And it’s a really historic day at the birthplace of Canada.” For the past eight years, Muslims have prayed in the basement of a building in Charlottetown’s downtown.
Besides offering a space for worship, the new mosque will offer youth and social programs for the community. The mosque will also act as an Islamic Centre, so non-Muslims can also learn about the religion. Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee, who was on hand for the opening, and said the mosque will give Muslims an added incentive to stay on P.E.I. in addition to helping attract immigrants.