// A little mosque’s big journey to the Arctic circle!
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jannah
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« on: Oct 02, 2010 05:56 PM »


A little mosque’s big journey, from Winnipeg to Inuvik

What will become the most northerly mosque in North America crosses the Red River early Wednesday on its way to Inuvik, NWT.

House of worship makes one of the world’s longest move

Winnipeg — From Thursday's Globe and Mail
Published on Thursday, Sep. 02, 2010 12:39AM EDT
Last updated on Thursday, Sep. 02, 2010 7:30PM EDT

By the time it reaches Inuvik, the prefab mosque strapped to Kevin Anderson’s truck will have earned a place in the record books – even before the first worshippers pass through its door.

The stout structure will become the most northerly mosque in North America – and possibly the world – as well as the focus of what’s believed to be the world’s longest building move.

That significance is likely lost on motorists dodging Mr. Anderson’s 30-foot-wide load as he diesels slowly past farms outside Selkirk, Man. A small alcove, or mihrab, juts from the rear of the cargo, destined soon to face Mecca rather than canola fields and cattle herds. But there is little else to indicate that this single haul represents so much to so many: the aggregate religious ambitions of an Arctic community’s Muslims, the changing spiritual mores of Canada’s North and a major logistical pain in the neck.

Three weeks from now, roughly 100 Muslim worshippers in Inuvik, NWT, are expected to pray at the building, thankful for a sturdy replacement for the 50-year-old trailer they currently use. The mosque’s journey will take it from Winnipeg to Edmonton, then north to Hay River, where a barge will float it toward the shores of the Mackenzie Delta, home to Inuvik’s 3,600 residents. “In Islam, to build a house of worship, the reward is a castle in paradise,” said Hussain Guisti, the man who’s single-minded vision has propelled the project. “To do that we are doing like Star Trek and going where nobody has gone before.”

It’s one more example of Canada’s crumbling religious frontiers. The country’s Muslims – long seen as an urban population – are migrating to smaller resource towns in search of boomtown riches and a better quality of life. The Muslim population of the Northwest Territories alone is growing at a rate of 300 per cent every decade, according the latest Statistics Canadanumbers. And Islamic groups in Timmins, Prince George and Whitehorse are all in various stages of mosque construction.

But Dr. Guisti and the small charity he helped start three years ago with the modest goal of building a mosque in Thompson, Man., decided to aim higher – in latitudinal terms at least.

After the Zubaidah Tallab Foundation successfully erected the Thompson mosque, Dr. Guisti went looking for high-profile projects. Inuvik was a perfect fit.

“The opportunity to help make Islamic history played a big part in it,” he said.

The foundation researched building a mosque in Inuvik from scratch, but cost estimates ran over $550,000. Dr. Guisti found they could save $200,000 by having a Winnipeg company construct a prefab building and then haul the structure by road and river.

They had to design a building short enough to avoid power lines and bridges and design a course that avoided major highways.

“It’s one hell of a route,” said Mr. Anderson, the truck driver, from his cab. “We have to add a good 500 kilometres to the trip just taking less busy back roads.”

Mr. Anderson hopes to reach Hay River next week, just in time for a barge to tote the mosque to Inuvik by Sept. 24. That’s where Ahmad Alkhalaf, project manager on the Inuvik end, will pluck the mosque from the barge and place it on two lots the local Muslim community purchased in 2008.

“It’s really quite an honour to be part of this,” he said. “Currently during Ramadan we get so many people coming to the trailer that we have to rent a community hall. It’s a problem. The mosque will fix that.”

And while the faith of Manitoba Muslims has erected an unlikely building, it has yet to pay for it.

“We’re still short about $75,000,” said Dr. Guisti. “But I have confidence in God. He’s come through thus far.”

 
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« Reply #1 on: Oct 02, 2010 06:00 PM »

This is the cutest thing ever!!!! bouncygrins

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http://www.cbc.ca/canada/north/story/2010/09/23/north-mosque-inuvik-arrives.html
There's a little sound slideshow on there too that's amazing to watch. Everyone is so happy ^  Kiss


Arctic mosque lands safely in Inuvik
By CBC News


The world's most northern mosque has arrived by barge in Inuvik, N.W.T., giving Muslims in the Arctic town a proper place of worship.

A Northern Transportation Company Ltd. barge arrived in Inuvik late Wednesday afternoon, carrying the prefabricated 1,554-square-foot beige building that will soon be a mosque and community centre for a growing Muslim population in the Arctic hamlet of 3,200 people.

Facing an early snow, a crowd of about 40 Muslims greeted their long-awaited mosque at the NTCL shipyard. There were prayers, group photos, hugs and applause.

"It's a beautiful building. Everyone's happy to have this small little home for meeting and for prayer, and for the children to be playing in," resident Amir Suliman told CBC News when the mosque arrived.

The arrival caps an incredible 4,000-kilometre road and river journey from Manitoba, where the mosque was built, through two provinces and the Northwest Territories, down the Mackenzie River to the community just north of the Arctic Circle.

The Zubaidah Tallab Foundation, a Manitoba-based Islamic charity, raised the money to build and ship the structure to Inuvik to help the Islamic community there.

Long road, river journey

Suliman, who organized a recent multicultural fair in Inuvik, said it was a proud day, recalling two years of fundraising and the stress in recent weeks over whether the mosque would make it north in one piece.

The mosque's journey, which began by semi-trailer at the end of August, faced delays due to heavy traffic, highway regulations, narrow bridges and high winds.

Just as the mosque had crossed the Alberta-Northwest Territories border, it came close to tipping into Reindeer Creek as the semi-trailer tried to cross a narrow bridge.

The semi-trailer made it on Sept. 10 to Hay River, N.W.T., where it was put on the barge - the last one of the season - and floated 1,800 kilometres down the Mackenzie River to its final destination.

Back in Inuvik, another man who watched the mosque's arrival was Mamdouh El-Haradi, originally from Sudan and one of the town's taxi drivers.

"It's a symbolic place for the Muslims," he said. "It means that if anybody comes up here, they'll find a place to pray and worship. Plus, we're planning on using it as a community centre."

Replaces small trailer

El-Haradi said the new mosque will be a welcome replacement for the existing one-bedroom trailer Inuvik's Muslims have prayed in over the past decade.

In recent weeks, local Muslims have marked Eid al-Fitr - the Festival of Ramadan Fast-Breaking - with prayers and a community feast at Inuvik's curling lounge.

"We used to go to the arena to pray and have our festivities. Now we have a place to stay," El-Haradi said. "Inuvik is a nice place to live and a nice place to have a mosque. We hope everybody enjoys it."

Cab driver Kerry Alkadri said no official name has been chosen for the mosque, but he joked it could be called the "graceful mosque" because it survived its journey in one piece.

Dozens of Muslim families in Inuvik have had to send their children to live elsewhere in Canada because there has been no mosque or Islamic education centre in town.

They have tried raising money for a mosque, but the Islamic community there is just too small - only about 100 members.

It cost the Zubaidah Tallab Foundation about $300,000 to construct the mosque in Winnipeg and ship it north. That has saved Inuvik's Islamic community tens of thousands of dollars in labour and material costs, according to organizers.

'This is what Canada is all about'

"You want to break down crying, really. It's joyous, it's a sense of achievement," said Hussain Guisti, who heads up the foundation.

"We were told, 'You know, this can't be done. It's impossible. There's no way you're going to get [it] there in one piece.' To know that I did it - it's a feeling of joy."

Guisti said the generosity of everyone who helped make the northern mosque a reality is incredible.

"This is what Canada is all about," he said. "It shows the welcomeness of Canada, it shows the tolerance of Canada, it shows we're multicultural, we're diverse."

The new mosque will need to have carpets and additional doors installed. An official opening ceremony will take place once that is done, in about a month.
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« Reply #2 on: Dec 16, 2010 02:17 PM »

Someone made a cute little slideshow set to music. Awwww...

Journey of the Midnight Sun Mosque

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