By 25th June 2015Uncategorised

Not many are aware of the hidden tranquillity of Croydon Mosque & Islamic Centre (CMIC), but right now, Croydon’s community is fortunate enough to have the opportunity to find out more about Islamic culture and what goes on inside a Mosque. From now until the 28th June 2015 (excluding Friday) you can witness for yourself the beauty of the Mosque, as well as finding out lots more about the religion.

From when we entered, we were greeted to such hospitality from our welcoming tour guide, who was open to all of our questions and did not hesitate to go into depth with each component of the tour. We were asked to take off our shoes, as to not bring in anything from the outside streets, and women were asked to cover their hair with scarfs out of respect.

The tour began in a hall on the ground floor, where we gained a little background information on Islam: the perception of women, a brief overview of Ramadhan, and even the similarities between Christianity and Islam (there appeared to be very many). We then were taken through all the areas of the Mosque, saw many of the separate halls for men and women, and even had the opportunity to briefly see an English lesson for the women in action. We learnt from our tour guide that over Ramadhan 30,000 people visit the Mosque in a week, and they have to pray, either at the Mosque or wherever possible, seven times throughout the day.

Truly commendable is how the CMIC has progressed and grown through the years. What had once started in a small ground floor hall in the 1970’s has now developed to its current grand building  with seven very large halls on many floors, willing to accommodate 3500 people:  all through the funds raised by the Muslim community. Another section of the Mosque is currently being built, extending the Mosque to accommodate even more people, and are currently receiving donations for it. The interior is quite spellbinding: the deep red carpet and the glistening chandelier on the ceiling, surrounded by words written in Arabic. It truly is a treat to witness.

We were grateful for such an interesting experience, which educated us all in the world of Islam. However, we were happily surprised to all receive a Qur’an at the end of our tour, as well as a bottle of water for our journey back. The whole tour was such a warm, welcoming experience that gave me an, albeit small, insight to Islam: something I knew very little about before entering.