East London Mosque opens doors to non-Muslims

A Mosque in East London is opening its doors to non-Muslims in an attempt to promote a better understanding of Islam and what goes on inside the building. Members of the local community are invited to take a look inside the mosque, observe prayers and ask questions about the religion. In response to a video appearing online earlier this year showing men shouting homophobic abuse at another man in east London, telling him to “get out of here” as “it is a Muslim area”, the East London Mosque condemned the actions of the self-styled ‘Muslim patrol’. “We felt like because this was an issue right on our doorstep we had to speak out about that one.” One of the members of the mosque said that “Some people want to ask simple questions like whether as non-Muslims they’re allowed to come in the mosque. Others make pretty broad requests like ‘what is Islam?“. According to the report an increasing number of mosques were holding similar events. Following the influence of groups like the English Defence League wanting to vilify mosques saying they are full of fundamentalists who don’t want to engage with mainstream society the members of the mosque feel they have a role to play in changing that view.