8 a.m., Feb. 16)
Quebec City mosque attack brings local youth together
By Fred Sherwin
The Orléans Star
doesnt take much to show you care about somebody
else. Sometimes a smile, a wave, a hug, even a handshake can
make a huge difference if you are attempting to raise
someones spirits and help them through a difficult
time in their life.
Bilal youth member Ameena Ally (left) stands
in front of a display containing cards and
letters writen by students at St. Peter High
School, including Shealyn Foley (right). Fred
group of Grade 10 students at St. Peter Catholic High
School did their best to raise the morale of the Muslim
congregation at the Masjid Bilal mosque on Innes Road.
considerate and caring teenagers were quick to react upon
hearing the news of the recent mass shootings at a Quebec
City mosque which resulted in the death of six people
and left several more seriously injured.
(Scott) Searle and I approached the local mosque on Innes
Road to see how we could get involved and help out during
their time of suffering and grief, explained Linda
Roe, who teaches a Leadership Class at the Fallingbrook
area high school.
their next class, Roe and her students decided to create
and send a collection of cards to the mosque expressing
their support for the local Muslim community and let them
know that the St. Peters population cared about
them in their time of sorrow and pain.
goal was to show the mosque that we were offended by the
attack, stood in solidarity with them and stand together
forever as human beings, Searle stated.
cards were delivered via a short five minute drive to
the mosque, but the gesture went a long way in raising
the spirits of the worshipers at the Masjid.
Imam Mohammed Badat was the first one to read the cards
and was overwhelmed with the heartwarming gesture directed
towards his fellow Muslims.
was very emotional to receive and read the cards. We really
appreciate the outpouring of support from the students
at St. Peter, said Badat who has been serving the
Orléans Muslim community since 2000.
event in Quebec City was extremely sad; it truly affects
everyone but the high schools kind gesture reinforces
my belief that people are good and we (Masjid Bilal) will
continue to look at the positive side of things.
Abbasi is in charge of a weekly Quran class at the mosque
in which he shares the religious text of Islam.
was at the Masjid when Imam Badat read out the cards of
support to the congregation.
could see that our worshippers were touched and appreciated
the message that the young students were attempting to
send. My immediate thoughts were that we had to repay
their kindness and reach out to them, said Abbasi.
Innes Road mosque responded with cards of their own along
with a plaque to show their appreciation.
week after the tragic event in Quebec City, Ameena Ally
planed on going to her Quran class like she does
every Sunday morning.
with a heavy heart, Ally heard about the cards which brightened
her day almost instantly.
heard that the St. Petes students reached out to
us. It was so warming and thoughtful to read their kind
words. Im very grateful for their support,
said the University of Ottawa psychology student.
Alnehmi attends St. Peter and is Muslim. She wanted to
be a part of the healing process and took an active role
in the card exchange.
was very saddened by the shootings in Quebec City. A mosque
is a very sacred place to go and pray. To have someone
walk in and start shooting
people is pretty scary, said Alnehim.
am Muslim but I attend a Catholic High School which shows
you that we have to learn from each other and make sure
to establish strong connections.
more news/information about the Islamic Society of Cumberland
(Masjid Bilal) or to arrange a mosque visit www.masjidbilal.org.
of the Qu'ran class at the Masjid Bilal in
Orléans meet students from St. Peter
High School for the first time. The two groups
have exchanged letters and cards in the aftermath
of the Quebec City mosque shooting. Fred Sherwin/Photo
story was made possible thanks to their generous support
of our local business partners.)
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