This was a photo I took when I was in Medina back in 2007 when I first went on Hajj.
Today, as I was popping over to my parents’ house (which is situated very near our local mosque), I noticed a group of people, obviously non-Muslim taking photos one after another with the mosque in the background. It seemed that they were very interested to find a mosque in a small town in Buckinghamshire. I decided to park up my car and offer some information about the mosque and thought it would be a good idea (and good da’wah) to offer to take them inside. I asked them if they wanted to look inside and I was met with blank stares, turns out that these people were Slovak tourists who spoke very little English. I eventually made myself understood and excitedly,they, with their cameras at the ready, followed me.
It was about 10:30 am so there was a good chance that the Mosque was locked but as it happens it was open. I asked them to remove their shoes and took them into the mosque. Whilst our mosque is a nice mosque, generally well kept, it is not breathtaking in its decor but these people were genuinely excited at being inside a mosque. Our main prayer hall is quite beautiful with a high ceiling and some very elegant calligraphy adorning the walls and dome and this they found very captivating and took lots of photographs.
It was quick 5 minute visit that left a good impression on them, even though they couldn’t speak English they appreciated the fact that someone took the time out and offered them a closer look at something they wouldn’t have ordinarily visited. They even insisted that I be in a group photo with them! Our mosques should be more welcoming to visitors and we should encourage people to visit us.