Islamic Society of Greater Kansas City

Information about this center is no longer updated. This data was last updated on 22 March 2013.

Phone: 816-763-2267
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History and Background

In the early 1970s, the small Muslim community in Kansas City gathered to hold the first Salah (prayer) for Eid al-Fitr. Later that night a committee was formed to establish a mosque in Kansas City. The committee’s goal was to have an Islamic Center built within a decade. The Muslim community began to raise funds locally and eventually abroad. After several years of fundraising, the group was able to purchase four acres of land where a mosque was constructed, opening its doors in March, 1981, with the first prayer service. In addition, in that same year, The Islamic Society of Greater Kansas City (ISGKC) was established as a non-profit corporation. After the construction of the mosque, the ISGKC began to focus on other projects. In December,1981, the community purchased nine acres for a community park. Also in that year, a school, the Madrasat Anoor (school of light) was established at the center. The school served the community for two years and then closed. In May, 1984, through a joint project with the Islamic Society of Central Missouri in Columbia, the community purchased nine acres for a Muslim cemetery. In 1987, a full-time Islamic school opened in the center. The center housed the school until a new school building was constructed in August, 1997, on four acres of adjacent land. The school's enrollment has increased to over 150 students.

Description of the Center

The Islamic Center was built to serve the approximately 15,000 Muslims of greater Kansas City. The center was built using both traditional Islamic and modern architectural design. The center consists of a mosque (two prayer halls, one for men and the other for the women), a multi-purpose room used for an assortment of community activities, meeting rooms, a library, a bookstore, classrooms, a playground, and a kitchen that serves both the center and the school. The office of the ISGKC is also located in the front of the center. In addition to the center, there are the school, a child-care facility, and an Islamic cemetery.


Many ethnic groups are represented, including whites, blacks, Asians, Indians and Middle Easterners. Men and women ranging in age from the elderly to young children come to worship at the center daily.

Activities and Schedule

The mosque provides a place for Islam’s obligatory five daily prayers. The Jum’ah (Friday obligatory communal prayers) is held around 1:00 p.m, with over six hundred Muslims attending regularly. The service is conducted in both English and Arabic, with the women attending in a separate prayer hall located in the basement of the center. The women’s prayer hall has a live television feed so that they are able to listen to the prayer and sermon. The sermon and prayer are given by the imam (prayer leader) and occasionally by a guest speaker. The Friday prayer can also be heard at the Overland Park (Kansas) Community Center. This new location allows more of the congregation to participate in the prayers from places of work on the Kansas side of Kansas City. In addition to prayer, the center also provides study sessions open to the community. These sessions cover subjects such as the Arabic language, study of the Qur’an, and classes on Islam. The sessions are held in Arabic and English. Other activities include weddings, conferences, iftar (dinner) during the fasting month of Ramadan, community picnics, feasts, carnivals, and a free clinic. There are also programs for introducing visitors to the center. For details about the schedule and activities, see the web site at

Guidelines for Visitors

The center encourages visits to the mosque during prayer services, and it is likely that the office manager will be able to assist and guide guests. Visitors should arrive early so that any questions can be answered before the prayers begin. Visitors are welcome to sit in the prayer hall but not to participate in the prayer or walk in front of anyone who is praying. Conservative dress is appropriate, covering arms and legs. An example of inappropriate clothing would be shorts for men or short skirts for women. Women should cover their hair. Shoes should be left at the entrance. Visitors should behave with respect as they would when visiting any religious institution. The center encourages visitors to freely ask questions about mosques, Islam, and Muslims. A more extensive list of visitors guidelines can be found at the centers website