Many students might not know it, but since 1997 there has been a mosque tucked in the heart of the Southeast Como neighborhood.

Dar Al-Farooq, which means House of Farooq in Arabic, is a mosque and community center located on 17th Avenue Southeast. Muslims from across the metro area practice and learn about their religion there.

Abdi Gonjobe, coordinator of educational and religious activities for Dar Al-Farooq, said the center offers classes, social services and other opportunities for people to learn about Islam. Classes about Islam are offered for both children and adults.

The adult classes are part of the Islamic University of Minnesota, an independent educational organization.

“It’s a pretty new program,” Gonjobe said. “I expect it to grow.”

He said between 10 and 15 people attend classes.

On Nov. 7, a group of high school students visited Dar Al-Farooq to learn about Islam, Gonjobe said.

Roughly 300 people visit the mosque regularly.

According to the Islamic University of Minnesota, there are about 150,000 Muslims in Minnesota.

Within Dar Al-Farooq there is also a small library of well-known Islamic texts. Books are available in Arabic, English and various other languages.

Gonjobe, a Kenya native, said many of the mosque’s community members are Somali, but Muslims from across the world worship there too. (MORE)


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