Muslim youth outreach effort brought to Moose Jaw homes, people

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Muslim youth outreach effort brought to Moose Jaw homes, people

Members of Saskatchewan's Muslim community went door to door in Moose Jaw on Sunday as part of an initiative by Muslim youth who want to dispel misconceptions and misunderstandings about the faith.

Sunday's initiative was the latest effort for the Muslim community to reach out following the deadly attack in a mosque in Quebec City in late January.

"This was a very important campaign, especially after these attacks," said Zeeshan Ahmed, the imam for the Ahmadiyya Muslims in Saskatchewan. "We must remember on that day that a mosque wasn't just attacked, it was a place of worship."

Ahmed says Islam teaches that no place of worship should be attacked.

Sunday's visits were part of a national effort from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association. Ahmed says there were about 20 youth who spent the day in Moose Jaw, knocking on people's doors, speaking with people downtown and handing out information about Islam.

"I'm really touched that they're coming out," Jean Bell said after one group visited her home, adding that she wasn't sure where she could go in the city to connect to the Muslim community.

Ahmed says one of the things he's asked about most is if everyone is welcome at mosques.

"It was hard for me to understand, really, why someone would think that way. The reality is that mosques were not only places of worship. In history, we see mosques were universities, places of social gathering. And mosques were for anybody to come."

A public forum will be held at the Moose Jaw Public Library on March 18 to give another opportunity for people to come together, Ahmed said.