Size of Muslim Community
It is difficult to know exactly how many Muslims there are in Palmerston North. This is partly because many of the Muslims living here come here temporarily to study at Massey University and therefore there is a fast turnaround time of individuals within the community. The Muslim community in Palmerston North is characterised by many Muslim families coming and going throughout the year. A rough estimate would probably put the number of Muslims here at around 200-300, although it could be higher.
Composition of Muslim Community
Islam is a religion for all peoples and the diversity in the Muslim community of Palmerston North is a reflection of this, consisting of people from Africa, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, North America, the Pacific Islands and of course many New Zealanders who have converted to Islam. In fact, almost every continent is represented!
Mosques and Islamic Centres
There are two mosques / Islamic Centres in Palmerston North – one located in the city at 81 Cook Street, and the other on the Massey University Campus, next to the lake, behind the AgHort Lecture Block (see map below or go to the location map on the Massey University website to locate the Islamic Centre on the full campus map).
The building that is now the city Islamic Centre was previously owned by another organisation and was converted into an Islamic Centre, and is now run by the Manawatu Muslim Association. The Massey University Islamic Centre was purpose-built to suit the needs of the Muslim staff and students in 1997 and is maintained by Massey University.
Congregational Friday prayers are run at both Islamic Centres, but normally only during semester time at the Massey Islamic Centre. Anyone (non-Muslims included) is welcome to go along to watch and listen to the sermon on Fridays or just to visit either Islamic Centre at any other time. However, anyone interested may want to contact us at IRIS first to get information on appropriate dress, etc. before attending. The congregational Friday prayers are usually held at around 1:30pm during daylight savings time and 12:30pm during the rest of the year and generally last for around 30 minutes.
This piece is taken from the website of the Islamic Resource & Information Service.
See on-line at: http://www.iris.org.nz/islam_in_palmy.php