VIDEO: Meriden mosque reflects on 2015 shooting following Pittsburgh attack
For one religious community here in Connecticut, this weekend’s deadly shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh brings back memories of what it feels like to be targeted because of one’s faith.
MERIDEN, CT (WFSB) – For one religious community here in Connecticut, this weekend’s deadly shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh, brings back memories of what it feels like to be targeted because of one’s faith.
This November marks three years since a mosque in Meriden was shot up by a neighbor.
It happened at night when no one was around.
It’s forever changed them, they added cameras, and have members act as security.
Now, they and other religious leaders are pushing for different faiths to come together in this difficult time.
The reminder is still there, a bullet hole inside Meriden’s Baitul Aman Mosque.
“We need to do whatever we can to take away hate, in terms of education and bringing people together,” said Wajid Danish Ahmed, Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
For Wajid Danish Ahmed with the Ahmadiyya Muslim community, he remembers it well.
November 2015, the night of the Paris attacks.
Ted Hakey, who lived next door, fired 4 bullets towards the mosque after a long night of drinking.
Hakey served time in prison, and showed remorse, with the mosque, not only forgiving him, but even befriending him.
“We learned from that lesson was to knock on people’s doors even more and to bring people together as a community and I think we need to continue doing that. We’re all under the umbrella of one humanity and I think that’s the most important thing,” said Ahmed.
But sadly, that humanity has been tested recently.
“We’ve had some horrific things going on. Seventeen pipe bombs sent, we had 2 African American killed after a failed attempt to break into a black church, we had 11 people killed in a synagogue,” said Shawn Marshall.
Shawn Marshall and Pastor Roger Wilkins, the President of the Greater New Haven Clergy Association, spent yesterday reaching out to a number of local synagogues.
“We offer our support in whatever way we can, just our speaking together and standing together when the bible says, when one cries, we all cry together, when one rejoices, we rejoice together. I think it’s that coming together that makes us unites us more,” said Wilkins.
Different faiths, with a common goal.
“Go out and talk to our neighbors, reach out to them, show them that we’re all Americans, at the end of the day and human beings,” said Ahmed.
After the shooting at this mosque, members started having a number of interfaith prayer gatherings.
In fact to this day, they still invite the public in to learn about their faith, offering coffee, cake, and conversation, every Friday night at 7 p.m.
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