The chant in Arabic blasted from rooftop loudspeakers, drowning out both the growl of traffic from nearby interstates and the chatter and clinking glasses on the patio of the dive bar that shares a wall with Minneapolis’ oldest Somali mosque.
Dozens of men in fashionably ripped jeans or impeccably ironed kameez tunics rushed toward the Dar Al-Hijrah mosque. Teens clutched smartphones, and some of the older devout shuffled in with the aid of walkers from the high-rise complex across the street where thousands of Somalis live.
This spring Minneapolis became the first large city in the United States to allow the Islamic call to prayer, or adhan, to be broadcast publicly by its two dozen mosques. …
Mosques in Minneapolis are preparing to publicly broadcast the Islamic call to prayer over loudspeakers after the community became the first large U.S city to allow it. https://t.co/FotipRFRJx pic.twitter.com/Ox3qcGlxax
— The Associated Press (@AP) June 2, 2022
“It’s a sign that we are here,” said Yusuf Abdulle, who directs the Islamic Association of North America, a network of three dozen mostly East African mosques. Half of them are in Minnesota, home to rapidly growing numbers of refugees from war-torn Somalia since the late 1990s.
Abdulle said that when he arrived in the United States two decades ago, “the first thing I missed was the adhan. We drop everything and answer the call of God.”
The adhan declares that God is great and proclaims the Prophet Muhammad as his messenger. It exhorts men — women are not required — to go to the closest mosque five times a day for prayer, which is one of the Five Pillars of Islam.
Islam has been at war with western civilization for 1400 years, and its fundamentalists keep it anchored to the seventh century. It is a strong culture, much more confident than ours, currently.