Saturday, July 24, 2010

Response to the Midland Beach mosque debacle

The Muslim American Society released a statement regarding the recent decision by the board of St. Margaret Mary's Church to cancel the sale of the land to the group.
"The Muslim community, including MAS, is disappointed with the Archdiocese’s decision to back away from this sale.  This denial reinforced an unfortunate notion that the pressures of bigotry and Islamophobia triumphed over a good, long-standing relationship between the Archdiocese and the Muslim community.  It is indeed a setback.

Every person and religious institution has a right to build a house of worship, including the Muslims in the South Shore of Staten Island.  It is a travesty that a public official subjected MAS to an investigation simply because it chose to exercise its constitutional right to establish an Islamic center.  The results of the investigation proved false all the inflammatory accusations against MAS—something already clear to everyone who has worked closely with us.

While we continue to pursue our religious and constitutional rights, we will not hesitate to reach out to the Staten Island community at large, to establish mutual understanding and to protect freedom of religion.

MAS is determined to serve all communities across the nation including Staten Island and is currently studying all available options in response to the Archdiocese’s decision."

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