While some religious leaders would like to open their own funeral homes, the cost of construction is a deterrent. When the Muslim Community Center scrapped plans to build a funeral home this year, organizers continued sending families to a local funeral home that has been friendly to Islamic families, said center manager Aqueel Khan. That parlor is Caribe Funeral Home, 3314 W. Armitage Ave., where half of the services are for Muslims.
"The price suits us," Khan said. One family used the home and spread the word, he said. But also important is the ability for families to wash the body of the deceased, an Islamic tradition that Caribe owners allow on the premises.
Caribe was opened in the early 1960s by Georgina and Julius Bishop, a Puerto Rican couple. Initially, they served the city's Latino population, but about five years ago, their clientele started to shift to serving more Muslim families.