Mosque ‘Not a Place for Conversion, But for Conversation’

May 13, 2009

Author: Nick Tarver

Source: The Enfield Advertiser,%20but%20for%20conversation%92

A new mosque which aims to bring Enfield’s diverse communities together has opened in Edmonton.

The Mevlana Rumi Mosque and Dialogue Centre, in Fore Street, opened its doors to a select gathering of politicians, community leaders and police last Thursday.

The mosque, which is known as the Rumi Centre, used to be a Sikh gurdwara and before that a library. It has now been renovated and will not only be a place of worship, but will also hold classes and community events.

Ozcan Keles, executive director at the mosque, said: “Some Muslims say we’re not that religious. They associate any reasonableness with other religions as being less of a Muslim. But dialogue is natural; it’s human.

“This is not a place for conversion, but for conversation. We intend to have a non-Muslim on the board to help us appeal to the wider community.”

Cem Erbil, who is also an executive director, said they hope to encourage as many non-Muslims as possible to use the Rumi Centre.

“This is not just for Turkish Muslims but for everyone,” he said. “There are so many people here from different parts of the community and we want to show them that this is for everyone.

Hopefully it will help Muslims and non-Muslims to mingle and integrate.”