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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Mosque invites visitors to ask questions at open house

Photo by Photo by: Jena Floyd
Mosque Open House

The Islamic Community of  Bryan-College Station hosted a mosque open house on Sunday to allow visitors to openly ask questions about Islam.
The open house featured several booths run by knowledgeable members of the faith. Some of the booth topics included the pillars of Islam and women of Islam. There was also a table of food with common delicacies associated with the culture.
The Muslim Student Association, created in the 1980s, eventually spurred the creation of ICBCS in 1988. The mosque the event was hosted at was built in 1995 after ICBCS was able to raise enough money for the construction. Hussein Hussein, president of the MSA, which is now affiliated with ICBCS, said the mosque welcomes anyone curious about Islam.
“We want to tell people this is where Muslims come to worship God and everyone can come in,” Hussein said.  
The main goal in hosting the open house was to clarify misconceptions people have about the beliefs of Islam, said president of ICBCS Anwer Ahmed.
“We want to share our faith with our friends and colleagues who are not Muslim and emphasize to them that we worship the same God as the God of Jews and the God of Christians, the God of Abraham,” Ahmed said. “Basically so that people could see that there are a lot of values that are very similar.”
Mosque community service worker Amina Ahmend said the event usually garners about 80 to 100 visitors each semester, but she feels the main success of the event is the knowledge the visitors take with them.
“That is what success means to me for these kinds of events,” Ahmend said. “When people actually learn who you are, appreciate who you are and respect it. That is a success to me. It’s not necessarily just the number of people who come, it is whether or not people learn something while they are here.”
Ahmed said Muslims are often portrayed negatively in media coverage, but he hopes people learn about Islam more on their own.
“I just want people to understand that Islam is not represented by what you see on the media,” Ahmed said. “If you want to look at Islam look at what the Quran says, look at what the Prophet actually said. Talk to some real Muslims. Come visit the mosque any time, not just at this open house. The mosque is always open. We are more than happy to answer questions and explain some of the common misconceptions people have.”  
Hussein said the event is a chance for Muslims to open up about their faith. Hussein said he also hopes people come by the mosque and ask questions about any misconceptions they may have.
“I want to tell everybody that Muslims are just like everybody else,” Hussein said. “We are American citizens, and we are Aggies. We abide by those traditions as well. We are not aliens.  We are not as scary as the news makes us. We are not the people that the news makes us, and more importantly we are human beings.”

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