LONDON: A YouGov Poll commissioned by the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has found that almost 70% of Britons hadn’t seen the inside of another faith’s place of worship, and almost 90% hadn’t been inside a mosque, in recent years.
With over 200mosques across the UK opening their doors this weekend on 18 February 2018 as part of Visit My Mosque Day, this year will have the largest ever number of mosques welcoming in their neighbours at the same time under the theme Open Doors, Open Mosques, Open Communities.
“Despite the multi-religious and multi-cultural society we live in, these poll results show that the majority of Britons have not seen what the place of worship of another faith looks like,” said Harun Khan, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain.
“Many faith communities hold open door events regularly and this Sunday over 200 mosques across the UK will also be opening their doors, to give people of all faiths and none the chance to get to know their neighbours of a different faith.” #VisitMyMosque – now running for its 4th consecutive year-is a national initiative facilitated by the Muslim Council of Britain, the country’s largest umbrella body of mosques and Islamic associations. Reverend Dr Toby Howarth, Bishop of Bradford, said “Crossing the threshold of a different place of worship can be an important step in learning about and getting to know our neighbours.
As a bishop and as a trustee of the Christian Muslim Forum, I very much welcome the Visit My Mosque Day initiative. I plan to visit mosques in Bradford on 18thFebruarywith local clergy and congregation members, and I warmly encourage others to do the same where they are.” Mosques from across London, South East, Midlands, Scotland, Wales, Lancashire, Yorkshire and the Humber and Northern Ireland will be taking part.
Visitors can find their nearest participating Mosque at www.visitmymosque.org/find An official launch event for press and media was held on Thursday 15 February at Al-Manaar Mosque (Muslim Cultural Heritage Centre) in North Kensington, London. The Muslim Council of Britain has also recently launched “Better Mosques: ACommunity Consultation” – a nationwide consultation where anyone is welcome to submit their ideas on how mosques can become better in Britain today.