Muslims open arson-hit mosque to public on SundayAusr

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SHAFAQNA – If you’ve ever been interested in what the inside of a mosque looks like, you’ll get your chance this Sunday.

Despite the Garden City Mosque being ravaged by a fire earlier this year, in what was the second arson attack on the mosque, the place of worship will be open to guests as part of an open day.

Police are still hunting the person or persons responsible for the Garden City Mosque fire and a $25,000 reward has been posted for information leading to an arrest or conviction.

Toowoomba’s Muslim community are currently using an adjacent prayer hall to worship as the main building has not yet been repaired.

It was gutted by the arson attack and advice from builders and architects suggests it will cost $700,000 to demolish and rebuild the mosque.

Islamic Society of Toowoomba president Professor Shahjahan Khan said the open day was part of ongoing efforts from Toowoomba Muslims to engagement with the wider community.

He said the Muslim community wanted Toowoomba residents to feel free to join the Muslim community in a place of worship.

“They can spend time in a friendly environment and share a cup of tea,” he said.

“It’s about building trust and a relationship with the community and to spread word of peace and harmony.

“No community should be remain as an exclusive enclave and every community should be part of the wider community.”

Prof Khan said a special invitation was extended to the whole community to visit the mosque from 1pm to 4pm.

The open day will follow a Walk Together event that will start from St Luke’s Church, Herries St at 10am.

Prof Khan said the Muslim community hoped to rebuild the mosque before the start of Ramadan in June next year.

“We’re trying our best to get everything in place so worshipers have the proper facilities in place by the end of May,” he said.

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