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24 September 2014

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Islam in Jersey

A Place to Pray

In the third of a six-part series, BBC Radio Jersey's Jo Sokill reports on how Jersey's Muslims have come to be meeting in a Catholic Community Centre for prayer.

A Muslim young man kneels to the floor in prayer.
A Muslim man kneels in prayer (Sujud).

Jersey's Catholic Church has come to the aid of the Muslim community. When the planning authorities ruled that the room in a restaurant they were using to pray was a fire hazard, they had to find a new location.

"Our Church has very much taught in recent years the importance of respect and the healing of past quarrels; particularly with Islam."
Canon Nicholas France

They temporarily decamped to a living room of someone's home where evening prayers were held every day during Ramadan.

Now Jersey's St Thomas' Church has offered the use of its Community Centre for Friday prayers. Canon Nicholas France explains how the idea came about:

"We are in the universal Catholic Church and our Church has very much taught in recent years the importance of respect and the healing of past quarrels; particularly with Islam."

Jersey's Imam, Dr. Alla Abdelbaky
Dr Abdelbaky gives a talk before prayers

With around 25 people present at only the second time prayers were held there, it's not a bad turn out.

Dr. Alla Abdelbaky, the community's Imam and the leader of the prayers, says he's happy to have a room:

I appreciated the offer and I thank very much the people who help us, to offer this place for Friday praying."

In the longer term Jersey's Muslim community would like to build an Islamic centre in the island. Jersey's Islamic Trust would like them to be recognised as a key part of island's multi-cultural society.

Friday prayers at a former meeting place in Jersey
Muslims gather to pray each Friday

To read the rest of the 'Islam in Jersey' series, simply click on Parts 1, 2, 4, 5 & 6 on the right hand side of this page.

Listen to Islam in Jersey

This part of Jo Sokill's six-part BBC Radio Jersey series can be heard again by clicking on the audio link at the top right hand side of this page.

last updated: 20/05/05
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jarinee maha
am glad to know from thailand

N Crowte
An example to be followed! St Thomas' Church is to be congratulated on this concrete step to promote understanding rather than focus on differences.

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