30Mosques.com | Day 8: Masjid Noor-ul-Huda

By Aman and Bassam

The Bronx! My family was in town today, so I decided to bring them along to visit Masjid Noor-Ul-Huda off Gun Hill Road. This is a large house they renovated into a breathtakingly beautiful mosque (that’s my Mommy on the bottom right).

I’m floored by the fact they only spent $500,000 to build this place. Check out how beautiful the interior is.

This place was 3 levels. Wudhu and bathrooms on the bottom floor, the prayer area for men on the first floor and area for women on the 3rd floor (more on the women’s area in a minute).

What I enjoy about this place is how loving the community was here. My family was welcomed to the mosque by some kind people who guided us to the back. We waited outside with some other brothers who had set up some tables for iftar. Each plate was filled with dates, bananas, grapes, peaches and pakora (desi potatoes fried in batter). That pink drink is sharbat, which is a traditional drink made from rose syrup and milk.

The people were extraordinarily kind to my mother. She was the only female that was in the women’s area and volunteers came up to the third floor and brought her food. They also came up every few minutes to make sure she had everything she needed. Meanwhile, we sat with the guys outside and broke our fast. I love being in gatherings where everybody is genuinely excited to be there, no matter who is there or how their day has gone.

A few minutes before prayer, I had the chance to take in how beautiful some of the decorations inside the mosque were. That’s when the imam came in and told me about the mosque’s history. The community here is very proud of their mosque and they have every reason to be.

Time for prayer.

After prayer, I told the imam about my 30 Mosques project. That’s when he gave me this kufi. I have never seen a place that has kufis with the mosque’s name on it. Tonight I am proud to have been a patron of Noor-Ul-Huda.

They insisted that we stay for iftar, but since my family was in town, I wanted to take them to Samosa Cabana. This hands down my favorite place to eat at. It’s in Westchester, and its a place run by two college students. They take burritos and put biryani inside it. I ordered a lamb biryani wrap.

I hadn’t seen my family in almost two months, so today was all about spending time with them. When I first told my mom about this project, at first she was worried about me being exhausted from taking this on (you can’t blame her for thinking like that, she’s a loving mother). But tonight, she was taken back by how kind everyone was and she began to understand why a project like this is so spiritually fulfilling.

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