Another ‘Symbol of Islamisation’: German church becoming a mosque
The former Capernaum church has been turned into a mosque, Austrian tabloid Wochenblick reports. The “Al-Nour” mosque was recently opened, converted from the former Hamburg church into a mosque. Muslims celebrate, neighbors start to shed unease.
The church, which was consecrated in 1961, was re-designed in 2002. A 1.5 million euro renovation overwhelmed the Evangelical Lutheran congregation, thus leaving the building empty for years.
Muslims bought the church from a private investor around 2012 for 1 million euros. The Islamic Al-Nour centre started the conversion of the church into a mosque and its opening was celebrated just recently.
Several representatives from the Hamburg Senate and the chairman of the Central Council of Muslims, Aiman Mazyek, along with representatives of the Protestant Church were expected to take part in the opening ceremonies.
Wochenblick, however, reports the project did not meet with approval from the public at all. Again and again there were protests.
In the end, many people are now concerned by the actual opening of the mosque and see it as a “symbol of the Islamisation of Europe”.
New York Times also reported the case and met Daniel Abdin, director of the Islamic Center Al Nour in Hamburg, at the church that has been converted into a mosque to accommodate Al Nour’s 2,000 Muslim congregants.
“A church was the last thing that we wanted,” said Mr. Abdin, 52, the director of the Islamic Center Al Nour in Hamburg, during a former interview outside the former Lutheran church, a squat modernist structure of concrete and red brick that construction workers were slowly encasing in scaffolding.
“The building stood empty for 10 years, and no one cared,” he said. “But when Muslims bought it, suddenly it became a topic of interest.”
And that is what Mr. Abdin got and converted, much to the dismay of some residents of this historically Protestant city in northern Germany, who view the conversion of the Lutheran church into a mosque as a symbol of the Islamisation of the country.