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Local mosques invite neighbors to pray, break fast this weekend

Imam Abdullah Dibba (left) and Mujeeb Choudhary (right) in the men’s prayer room at the Bait-ul-Aafiyat Mosque in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Imam Abdullah Dibba (left) and Mujeeb Choudhary (right) in the men’s prayer room at the Bait-ul-Aafiyat Mosque in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Mosques across the country are offering open houses during the month of Ramadan.

Islamic leaders in Philadelphia hope the events bring people of all faiths closer together.

Bait-ul-Aafiyat Mosque in North Philadelphia is one of the mosques opening its doors to the public this Saturday.

Both Muslim and non Muslim visitors are welcomed to break fast, pray, and eat a special dinner known as Iftar with members of the mosque.

Abdullah Dibba is the Iman of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Philadelphia Chapter. In the wake of the terrorist attack at a Mosque in New Zealand in March, he hopes the event increases understanding of his faith.

“We’ve seen examples around the country and around the world, it could be dangerous, but that does not hinder our efforts to bring people together with love,” Dibba said.

He welcomes questions from visitors who may be entering a mosque for the first time.

There are about 70 other mosques nationwide planning similar events this weekend, including The Al-Nasr Mosque in Willingboro, New Jersey.

Tariq Chaudhri, director of public affairs for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Willingboro Chapter said it’s important to show positive images of Islam.

“There’s a big emphasis in our faith about being good neighbors, and it’s important for us to interact with the people that not only live near the mosque, but those that are in authority for that area,” Chaudhri said.

Some elected officials, law enforcement and religious leaders are expected to speak at the Willingboro mosque.

The final day of Ramadan is June 4th.

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