Niigata Mosque (an idea turned true)
Annur group (Muslim Student Association in Niigata) was established by a Bangladeshi student around 1995. This group aimed to increase the relationship among Muslim students through their Islamic and cultural activities. Annur was introduced to International student Center in the university to be registered as student group. Accordingly, Muslim students had to perform their regular Friday prayer, Taraweh prayer and Iftar in Ramadan in the international student house. Then the brothers and sisters decided to rent a room nearby to the University to perform their regular pray. In Annur group every nationality is represented by a person that finally perform a committee guides Annur activity for a year. From the regular activities, welcome party for the new comers every year on May and November. This party mainly to introduce the Japanese life to the new students and introduce the challenges will face them as well Muslims who live in the same area. Farewell party for the students who will leave on March and September. Regular Iftar during Ramadan was guided by different nationalities. In the summer they have a Bar pique party.
After the numbers of Muslim students and citizens of Niigata University increased, the idea of Annur mosque Niigata was established by an Egyptian student in Niigata University at 2006. Students thought, at first, to buy a house and use it as a mosque. After discussions they change the idea to buy a land and build a mosque to fulfill the requirement of different Islamic cultural activities. Students decided to collect monthly participation from all students with different nationalities (Arab, Bangladeshi, Indonesian, Malaysians and Pakistanis). Moreover, students started HALAL food project and its profit would be added to the target money of the mosque. After a year the saved money was less than 1 million yen !. Students decided to make urgent campaign to collect money to the mosque.
At these moments there is a lot of wonderful examples of scarification appeared. From these a student said I came as poor with lack of knowledge then Allah gave me every thing at least I will give Allah a month salary and he paid 200.000 Japanese Yen. On the next day another student asked about the highest donator among the students and he decided to pay the double of his payment. Interestingly, a third student just he heard this story he decided to pay with his wife 400.000 yen + 1 yen to meet Allah with the highest donator.
After all of this these efforts, collected money was not enough to achieve the dream of the students to have a permanent mosque. Students thought to ask the help of other mosques, communities and associations allover Japan . According to the base that establishment of Mosques in any place is the responsibility of all Muslims not only Muslims who live in the same area. This idea was not accepted from the majority of the student but they decided to try.
Two Egyptian students decided to visit Toyama mosque (the nearest mosque to Niigata prefecture) to ask for help in their noble project. The great welcome and cooperation make Niigata Students change their mind to ask more and more communities. Then within 2 years the students went every place in Kanto, area contacted many communities for help and the mosque completely established by 2009.
By the grace of Allah, the students succeed to establish Annur Mosque, Niigata . We bought a 165 m2 land which:
• 1.5 km distance from Niigata University
• 300 meter distance from Niigata Daigaku mai station
• 100 meter distance from the main road 116 that cut the whole Niigata .
The first floor consists of sisters’ prayer room through the main entrance, Halal food room with separate door and 2 room for receiving new students. Halal food project is a wonderful service facilitates Halal food with suitable prices to Muslim communities living in Niigata .
The second floor consisted of a big prayer space for men.
The third floor is a wide hall for cultural and Islamic activities. The third floor can be used for Arabic classes, cooking classes for sisters, sewing classes, common Iftar during Ramadan and other activities.
Finally, peace be upon our prophet (Muhamed, PBUH).