Islamic Center of Boston
By Parwez Wahid
Speakers at the Opening Day Ceremony
of the new building of the Islamic Center of Boston
Massachusetts: The Islamic Center of Boston re-opened its
campus in Wayland, Massachusetts following completion of an
18-month reconstruction project that had started in May of
2004. (Reports in Pakistan Link of February and May 2004 described
the Center’s approval of the construction plans and
groundbreaking to commence the reconstruction.)
The $3 million reconstruction project has increased the square
footage of the Center to over 1,9000 square feet. The prayer
hall has been expanded; a new wing with second floor provides
more classrooms and a gathering hall. The remodeled kitchen,
expanded bathrooms and cloakroom provide better amenities
for members and patrons of the Center.
The Center actually became operational on Friday October 28th,
the last Friday of Ramadan. Eid prayers were held on November
3rd. The grand-opening ceremony was planned for November 27th
after the Center’s governing body had fully participated
in the Eid-related activities.
The ICB held a ribbon-cutting ceremony on November 20th to
mark the opening of the Sunday School that had been operating
from an area public school during the reconstruction period.
The November 27th Grand Opening ceremony was conducted to
showcase the new Center to the greater Boston community and
acknowledge the efforts of those members who had carried the
project to its completion.
Members of the community who were
present at the Opening Ceremony of the new building
of the Islamic Center of Boston
Hariri, a Director of the Center, conducted the MC duties
and introduced Karim Reda and Farah Hasan to open the program
with a recitation from the Holy Quran followed by translation.
Several presentations were then given.
Dr. Ghiath Reda, a former President and past Religous Director
of the Center, gave a historic background of the ICB. He recalled
the early days in the late 1970s and early 1980s when the
Center operated from a rented location in Cambridge before
moving to Wayland in the late 1980s. Dr. Reda acknowledged
two key persons: Dr. Mudassir Siddiqi and Barry Hoffman, the
Honorary Pakistani Consul General, whose contributions paved
the way for the eventual permanent establishment of the ICB.
Imran Qidwai of the Building Committee gave a report on the
Committee's background since 2001 and some of the obstacles
that it had to overcome in order to complete the project.
Others who addressed the gathering were: Dr. Asaf Razvi, Director
of Religion of the ICB; Pastor Fred Moser of the Episcopal
Church; Father Frank Silva, co-chair of the Wayland Clergy
Association and State Representative Michael Festa of the
Massachusetts State House.
The final address was made by the Center's President, Dr.
Malik Khan. Dr. Khan read a long list of names of people who
had made various contributions to the Center over its many
years. This included former Presidents, and former School
Principals of the Center. He also named dedicated members
who had put in countless hours in many different areas to
make the Center functional.
Dr. Khan also praised the local authorities; the Wayland Police
and Wayland Town government members, who were helpful and
cooperative in the execution of the project. Dr. Khan mentioned
how in some instances the Town government had taken extra
measures to ensure the completion of the project. He also
acknowledged a neighbor who attended a Wayland Town hearing
to speak in favor of the masjid's reconstruction effort. Malik
Khan ended his presentation with a prayer for the Center and
for all its patrons and guests.