Not only are they denouncing the terrorist attack, but they’re opening their doors and a dialogue with the community about the true meaning of Islam. They invited us into their mosque to send a strong message to the radical extremists are not a part of Islam.
“Nothing can justify what happened,” said Wajid Ahmed, of the Ahmadiyya Muslum Community in Meriden. The mosque has come out publicly to condemn the truck terror attack in New York City. They do not believe in violence, so they are standing up and striking back against radical Islam in the name of peace.
“The terrorist actions that happened have nothing to do with Islam and obviously they have really hijacked the name Islam, but it has nothing to do with what Islam would really promote and teach,” Ahmed said.
The Muslim community in Meriden does not take this lightly, as a matter fact behind true Islam banners there is a bullet hole from an incident back in 2015, when a neighbor shot at their mosque. The incident happened right after the Paris attacks, and they have since made friends with him in prison and Ahmed says actions must speak louder than words.
“One thing that we learned after what happened to our mosque the shooting in 2015, is we need to open our doors even wider and in terms of education,” said Salman Tariq, the imam at the Baitul Batt-all Aman Mosque in Meriden, which means house of peace.
He says their mosque has forgiven the man who pulled the trigger, even welcomed him into their services, and they continue to be friends to this day. They have also started a blood drive called Muslum for life, because during these terrorist attacks, blood is the first thing that is needed.
“Islam does not teach us to take the blood, Islam teaches us to give blood so that we can save the lives of fellow humans,” Tariq said.
They are taking it even one step further, every Friday at 8 a.m. they open their doors and serve coffee cake to the public to answer any questions and to educate people to the true Islamic religion.