Day 9 – Indoor Iftar – Bramalea Islamic Cultural Centre (BICC) – 25 Kings Cross Road, Brampton

Another day in Ramadan 2022, another indoor community Iftar.

This is not something to take for granted.

Rather it is something to be grateful for.

Day 9 / Night 10 of Ramadan 2022 finds us at Bramalea Islamic Cultural Centre for an Iftar sponsored by Islamic Relief Canada.

Brothers enter through this door, Sisters enter around the side then down a number of steps.

Stepping stones along the pathway towards the Sisters’ entrance seem recently placed.

We arrived around 7 p.m.

Iftar places were still being set up in twin basketball half-courts.

Last time I was here at BICC, these spaces weren’t part of their centre.

Three ways to sponsor Iftar : Cash donation in the box, Sign Up Sheet on the wall, QR Code.

Not every night has Iftar Dinner sponsored yet.

The Mihrab here is a representative prayer niche rather than a curve designed into the wall.

Islamic Geometry within the niche is a nice touch.

Tonight is a very different experience than last night’s Iftar at ISNA Canada.

Many more are wearing masks. There is a LOT of space between people.

The main prayer hall has a multi-storey ceiling height.

I constantly felt air being circulated from giant metal HVAC tubes hanging from the ceiling.

This air purification system remained on, its sound became ambient. Quite reassuring.

Bramalea Islamic Cultural Centre livestream.

They were ready for about 250 people at tonight’s Indoor Iftar.

Elsewhere on the Sister’s side, about 50 were here at BICC for tonight’s Iftar.

Adhan Al Maghrib, The Call to Prayer after Sunset, and time to break the fast according to Brampton local time.

Bramalea used to be its own city until it merged with Brampton.

Unlike the vastness of Toronto’s geographic boundaries, where Sunset time on the very east side of Scarborough can be some moments earlier than Sunset on the very west side of Etobicoke,

Bramalea local time is the same as Brampton local time.

Something different tonight…

Not difference in food, difference in when we got the food.

We were handed Iftar Dinner Trays as we entered the gym, where the brothers would be sitting to break the fast.

We broke our fast with dates and Rooh-Afza made with milk(!), then we had enough time to at least begin eating our dinners.

Many brothers finished their Iftar Dinners quickly, but tonight, I was the slow eater.

For the Holy Month of Ramadan 2022, Salat Al Maghrib, is scheduled for 15 minutes after sunset.

Many Muslims live within walking distance of the masjid, making BICC a Neighbourhood Masjid.

15 minutes is enough time for people to break their fast at home then arrive in time for Prayer.

Which is what many did tonight…

We began our Maghrib Salat at 19 minutes after Sunset.

BICC is also a Commuter Masjid.

One block over is Brampton Transit’s Bramalea Terminal, a major hub connecting Bus Rapid Transit Züm Buses, GO Transit, local buses, even the express bus to Pearson Airport.

Many more worshippers were wearing masks than not.

Some brought their own prayer mats, here’s mine.

Ramadan 2022 / 1443 Timetable.

Childmade Zakat-Al-Fitr collection box, I can’t recall ever seeing one before.

In Previous Ramadans, this multi-purpose room would pendulum sway between basketball half-court, Iftar dinner hall, overflow prayer area, then back to basketball.

Because BICC is renting the twin half courts on the other side of the hallway, this multi-purpose hall remains a carpeted prayer space throughout the current Ramadan.

These rented courts are being well used.

A little girl asked me if there were any more balls so she could play too?

Sorry little one, I don’t know.

This wooden three step had me wondering if it was a mimbar ?

In the front of the prayer hall, no wondering is needed, there is the mimbar.

Adhan Al Isha, The Call to Night Prayer.

When the call to prayer is made, the hall though not empty, is still far from full.

And just like that, many worshippers arrive all at once, the hall is nearly full for Isha Prayer followed by Taraweeh.

Masks and personal Prayers Mats are visible.

One of the brothers from the Masjid’s management reminded the teenagers speaking at the back there is Pray Time and then there is Play Time  and now it was Pray Time.

I can’t recall hearing words like that spoken directly to teenagers before.

Pray Time, Play Time.

Earlier in the day, Imam Omar Subedar lead a session of their “YARI Program” on Muslim Identity.

YARI = Youth Against Racism & Islamophobia.

The question of “Who Am I?” is something all youth ask.

This session helped with how one goes about answering that question.

You can still watch the recorded livestream.

Taraweeh for me tonight was 8 Rakats.

Who might guess there is an entire community behind this unassuming industrial door in Bramalea ?

Without the sign above the door, only those in the know would know this is the Bramalea Islamic Cultural Centre.

And now you know too.

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