Southern Brooklyn

Mosque Advocates Plan March, Opponents Say 'Unfair'

2812 Voorhies Avenue - the site of the proposed mosque

Advocates for the Sheepshead Bay mosque are hosting a Park Slope group’s annual walk for peace in our neighborhood to demonstrate support for the proposed religious facility.

The Muslim Consultative Network advocates strengthening and unifying the New York City Muslim community. They’ll be holding their 7th Annual Children of Abraham Interfaith Peace Walk on Thursday, June 10th, at 4 p.m. The interfaith march will visit other area religious institutions, including St. Mark Catholic Church and United Methodist Church of Sheepshead Bay. It will kick off at Ocean Avenue and Avenue Z, down to Emmons Avenue, over to Bedford Avenue, then up to the proposed mosque’s site at 2812 Voorhies Avenue.

Organizers of the march are portraying it as a symbol of interfaith solidarity against intolerance.

“We’ll be supporting the emergence of this new faith community while deepening our interfaith connections and spreading the message that here in Brooklyn people from different walks of life experience mutual respect and friendship,” the press release states.

On their website, they write that “participation will be especially meaningful since some residents are trying to prevention the construction of a mosque in that community. Please join us to show support for an inclusive community.”

But Bay People, Inc., an organization of neighbors surrounding the Voorhies Avenue and East 28th Street lot, say the march is an intimidation. They claim it’s meant to cast all opponents as bigots, rather than address the issues of parking, traffic and noise that Bay People says are at the root of their concern.

“[A Peace Walk] presumes that there is a war, and not just any war but a religious war going on in Brooklyn. There is no war and therefore no need for a ‘Peace Walk,'” says a press release issued by the group. “We are here to say that there are absolutely no anti-Muslim sentiments in our opposition to the proposed Mosque. Any organization or group of people using this issue to advance their ideas and strengthen their status, show opportunism and self-promotion with little regard to the community and people’s concerns.”

The group said that a facility serving 150 households – as the mosque’s planners say it will – requires adequate parking, and that calls to prayer will disturb families and classes at P.S. 52 a block away. Neighboring homes have windows just feet away from where a prayer room could be, while an overflow of attendees could crowd the sidewalk as they say it does at a mosque on Neptune Avenue.

Opposition appears to have worn down some of the mosque’s advocates. Wall Street Journal reported on June 5 that the property owner, Allowey Ahmed, is in the process of transferring ownership of 2812 Voorhies Avenue over to the national Muslim American Society, a group some opponents say has ties to radicalism. But Ahmed was quick to point out that the $800,000 price tag for the project is being raised locally, a retort to those fearing outside influences.

Regardless, Ahmed seems fed up with the community response to the Muslim community’s plans.

“One of the most basic things in our faith is you have to be good with your neighbors,” he told the Wall Street Journal. “It’s sad that our neighbors did not accept us.”

Comment policy


  1. In light of the passioned opposition to this mosque, some of which is tied to the groups relationship with the MAS, I find the transfer of ownership to the MAS somewhat discomforting. The public announcement of this was unavoidable, I'm quite sure that those opposing it are keeping tabs on every transaction involving that property, and those involved in the mosque are well aware of this. Still, I can't help but wonder whether there is an implied message here that there is a desire on the part of the larger Muslim community to use the power of numbers to make this into something much greater than a local issue. I'm not sure if increasing the tensions is a good development for anyone.

    I see that the church I had been a member of for a good portion of my life is participating in the Peace March on Thursday. I stand with them on the principle of tolerance which motivates them. But this doesn't decrease the discomfort I am experiencing because of the concerns expressed above.

  2. You know, after all of the hullabaloo surrounding the mosque being built close to Ground Zero, it's hard for me to think this as merely an issue of parking and congestion. I'm wondering if it would be given the same reaction if it were a Jewish temple or a Catholic church. I have no doubt that some people truly are concerned about a house of worship being put in that lot, but I also have no doubt that a lot of the opposition doesn't want the plan to go through because it will be a Mosque. We live in the most culturally diverse city in the world – I don't see why this is an issue.

  3. Would like to get some explaination from muslims on the following quotations:

    Qur’an 9:29—Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the Religion of Truth, from among the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

    Qur’an 9:73—O Prophet! strive hard against the unbelievers and the hypocrites and be unyielding to them; and their abode is hell, and evil is the destination.

    Qur’an 9:123—O you who believe! fight those of the unbelievers who are near to you and let them find in you hardness; and know that Allah is with those who guard (against evil).

    Hmmm, sounds so Peaceful!!! WOW!!!

  4. I guess you don't know you're bible too well do you?

    Suppose you hear in one of the towns the LORD your God is giving you that some worthless rabble among you have led their fellow citizens astray by encouraging them to worship foreign gods. In such cases, you must examine the facts carefully. If you find it is true and can prove that such a detestable act has occurred among you, you must attack that town and completely destroy all its inhabitants, as well as all the livestock. (Deuteronomy 13:13-19 NLT)

    Cursed be he who does the Lords work remissly, cursed he who holds back his sword from blood. (Jeremiah 48:10 NAB)

    You must kill those who worship another god. Exodus 22:20

    Kill any friends or family that worship a god that is different than your own. Deuteronomy 13:6-10

    Kill all the inhabitants of any city where you find people that worship differently than you. Deuteronomy 13:12-16

    Kill everyone who has religious views that are different than your own. Deuteronomy 17:2-7

    Kill anyone who refuses to listen to a priest. Deuteronomy 17:12-13

    Kill any false prophets. Deuteronomy 18:20

    Any city that doesn’t receive the followers of Jesus will be destroyed in a manner even more savage than that of Sodom and Gomorrah. Mark 6:11

    Jude reminds us that God destroys those who don’t believe in him. Jude 5

  5. Sir these verses are in the Quran for that time,, not for this time,.

    Something in Quran called ( The Reasons of the Revelation) that was in the time and era of the opposition to Islam when it started and there are lots of verses revealed after these and applying that to that time, not now or another times…

    How about the verses that says, (whomever killed a soul is like he killed all the nation) translated

    I hope when you read to see the other parts otherwise not fair to post part of the story…

  6. I do not think this a place for this ,, I think all religions are right and we have no clue of the consequences of the words..

    No time for that,, please stop being like that to ay one.

  7. So how do you “serious_question” explain the biblical verses that incite violence against non-believers?

  8. here is the announcement

    7th Annual Children of Abraham Interfaith Peace Walk
    June 10th, 5PM, Beginning at St. Mark Catholic Church (Ocean Avenue and Avenue Z).
    Join us as we walk together in a spirit of peace, Jews, Christians, Muslims and all people of good will.

    We'll walk down Ocean Avenue to Sheepshead Bay, then up Bedford to Voorhies Avenue. After stopping
    at various houses of worship we will conclude the event at Voorhies between 28th and 29th Street, the building site of a new mosque that has been opposed by a small but vocal few. Come to oppose that fear and show a friendly, alternative face!

    We'll be supporting the emergence of this new faith community while deepening our interfaith connections and spreading the message that here in Brooklyn people from different walks of life experience mutual respect and friendship.

    Delicious Refreshments will be served. Feel free to bring potluck as well!
    Feel free to email us for moe info and for directions

    P. Adem Carroll
    Muslim Consultative Network

    here is the statement

    We, as Muslims, are inviting everyone in the neighborhood to attend with us and other religious groups the annual peace walk, which will take place at sheepshead bay area starting at. St. Marks church in Ocean Ave and Ave Z, on Thursday the 10th of June 2010..
    The walk, which happened to be in Sheepshead Bay area this year for the support of the Muslims sheepshead bay center and mosque. It shows the support from others who are looking at us like anyone else who is trying to practice their rights and freedom, and that what makes this country a unique.
    Regards. “

  9. Israel….apparently my native country falling under influence of Turkey and Iran, my heart hurts for that because, if not for current president taking tough actions against radical muslims in baku. They would take over country long time ago…you know radical muslims tried to blow up 2 times Israeli Embassy in Baku…but you will never hear that in hateful liberal American mass media. My heart truly hurts for my native home….we really loyal to countries where we live but we keep getting prosecuted its either by local people or government in charge. In this case local government afraid to step down its been in power for years under one family rule from father to son now…they know what will happen. Hashem finally reunited us (jews) with our homeland Israel, but I will always cherish Baku and planning to go back G-d willing next year….we still have a decent Jewish population of local juhuro jews living in Baku.
    G-d bless both countries Israel and Azerbaijan. I pray that Azerbaijan does not fall under influence but time will tell

    I will tell you this ITS A BEAUTIFUL CITY AND COUNTRY….I MEAN CITY IS JUST GORGEOUS. Its like in Israel has modern city and old city…I used walk around old city for hours

  10. I won't be joining your walk.

    I fully support your right to build a mosque, but I think this mosque is being built in the wrong location. A religious institution of that scale should not be built in the middle of a residential street.

    It's a shame that your organization is using its “peace walk” as a protest march against your new community. That's not exactly a way to “oppose that fear and show a friendly, alternative face.” If anything this march will fan the flames of fear and opposition.

  11. “small but vocal few”??? In your estimation, how many people oppose this project?
    What do you know about it? Did you have a chance to stop by? How many opponents have you talked to?

  12. Thanks,
    Look what scale you are talking about… It will be same height of the building that is right next to it,,, 35 feet,, We are not exceeding the building next door,
    it has 3 story and an attic, we have 4 stories, ,, no difference at all.

    all buildings have 30 set back we have. all buildings have front 10 feet, we will have 15 feet instead.
    I just do not know who is making the center a huge while it is not .
    I just have no Idea, I m working in the plans and that is exactly what you and everyone will see..


    It is not a protest.. It is a walk, an Annuaual walk ,,, that take place every year, and this year it just happened to be in Sheepshead Bay.. Why to make it a big issue…

    That is it..
    I hope that helps you and others to know what is going on…


  13. You're not comparing apples to apples here. Even if the building is the same height and has the same setbacks it does not belong in the middle of a residential block.

    They are not constructing a building that is designed to house a single or 4 or even 8 families.

    This is the construction of a community center, a school and a sanctuary.

    Lets say this was a secular building with a community center, a school and an auditorium. Would you support that being built in the middle of a residential block?

    The real problem is the congestion this new building will cause to the neighborhood. How many people will this building serve on a daily basis and how many on holy days? Where will they drop off the kids? Where will they park for services?

    And with all due respect the claim that this “walk” just “happened to be in Sheepshead Bay” this year shows you to be either ignorant or naive or someone who is trying to deceive the community. The Sheepshead Bay location was chosen this year to make a point.

  14. I don't care if it is Muslim or Methodist, Jehovah's Witness or Jewish, as long as the property doesn't become tax exempt. There are far too many tax exempt freeloaders in the area already and it must be put to a stop.

  15. The problem is that whatever bible you are looking at, you have a few fanatics who will take everything literally although it was written for a different time.

  16. Well, I am just going to answer the questions you raised..
    First of all, schools should be welcomed anywhere ,, due to the fact they serve the community,, so I support any school, church, Synagogue right next to my house…

    According to NYC zoning regulations, all Places of worships are located on the residential areas, starting from R1- to R10…. Unless respected Bay People will are claiming to change the NYC Zoning Regulations to ban Muslims places of worships,,, Come on people think about it. Where that can be done, I do not think it will be done Here in the US ANY MORE.

    How many people will attend,, average 10 people will attend at each prayer time, and kids, will use the space after school, expecting 15 to 20 a day, I am comparing with other centers I see in the Borough.

    Again, People in the neighborhood will drop the kids and leave,, no place to park, that is their issue. so people will be obligated to walk instead.

    No parking available for any place of worship in the area, give me any place of worship has that in the city unless it is in Staten Island or places not like Sheepshead Bay… I can provide you with real life videos, of places of worships in the area.

    No one is deceiving anyone, It is the reality, the right,and the respect, these brothers and sisters of Muslims and Non-muslims are doing…. and that is the main goal of the “walk”

  17. TO the Author,
    Why it is unfair, to have that. does that mean you want them to have one too? loool
    Does it mean this group is not fair, are they in one side not the other? as a group who wants to unite community.

    I never saw you saying to the opponents Unfair for their oppositions to accept Muslims among them? Why not? As a blogger (Step Journalist), you should be fair and square to all parties… And have you contacted any one of them to see what ,, and why is the walk,, or just copy and paste…

    Just like to know that is it!!!


  18. God Bless you people for having the courage to speak up!! “Bay People, Inc.”, I'm with you 100% Also as a Catholic I feel our church should stay out of any Muslim March! I live 3 blocks away and we don't need you here..

  19. “and we don't need you here.. “

    wow ,, you see,, it is not the parking issue any more,, niether , noise, or traffic,

    I can tell it isa hatred,,
    But it is too late for that,,
    take care of your thinking…

  20. I'm inclined to agree here. And while participation from members of local churches may appear to make this a show of interfaith support for the principles of freedom of worship it actually creates more of a schism.

    There are quieter ways for community groups to show support for your cause. A paper statement is less combative.

  21. Go ask your priest why the Church would choose to be involved. While I think the march is a poor expression which will inflame more it is the Christian ideal to stand up for the oppressed, whoever they might be.

    We spend our entire lives being told what is just and right: why do we not learn?

    Reread the story of the Good Samaritan, (Luke 10:25-37) and perhaps you will then understand

  22. Lisanee!
    It is very clear that the participants of the walk will be from different races, religions and nationalities. How would support your opinion by saying “more of a schism”

    On my understanding and research, Muslims tried to calm it down, but the opponents made it wide and big already.They invited all the news and TV(check the contacts on their website). Also, They appeared on the Russian TV, where one of the Sheepshead Bay Mosque members was invited but could not make it.
    So it is already schism made by them and Muslims are isolated alone.
    I think this event will bring, tie, fasten people together more and break that barrier against Muslims that has been created by

    think about it!!

  23. As it is being presented the interfaith nature of this walk will not quell the existent fires, as well-intentioned as these people are in standing up for the right of religious freedom. It is a right that I support fully in principle, and mostly in practice. (the exceptions are not of relevance in this discussion ) But actions must be undertaken where they would do good, and not ill.

    A totally diverse group representing all of the diverse faiths of the community might have better effect. While the St. Mark church has a number of parishioners the UMC church is small. Perhaps the Homecrest Presbyterian and First Baptist Of Sheepshead Bay should have been involved as well. I do not know if they were contacted, but I do believe it is likely that they would have participated.

    And are all of the Jewish clerics in Sheepshead Bay opposed to the basic right of religious freedom? An attempt should have been made to get the involvement of Jewish congregations as well. Maybe that sounds like a impossibility but it is an important consideration. After all, people of Jewish faith comprise a large percentage of the population of this community.

    If indeed other religious institutions are involved their names would be helpful to know. And seeing a number of such institutions involved might help motivate some who would participate. The emphasis would have to be on community action rather than the seeming incursion of outsiders into it.

    I am afraid that an incursion is what will be the perception that this march will create. Despite any sincere attempt to present otherwise.

  24. I really like the story,,,
    It is just like what Quran said about nighbors and helping others.

    wow, intersting

  25. Great comment in today's Daily News “Voice of the People” section:

    “Perhaps Voicer Shazia Amin is not aware of the Prophet's instructions on how to treat infidels in conquered lands. They are to be given three options: die by the sword, convert to Islam or be second-class citizens forced to dress differently than Muslims and pay onerous taxes. They may not build houses of worship or repair any that have been damaged or destroyed. A nonbeliever's word is not admissible against the word of any Muslim, and Muslims may always lie in the service of Islam. This is what life would be like for Christians and Jews under Sharia law.

    Rosemary McClane”

    I agree big time. Islam is NOT a religion of peace – it is intolerant of unbelievers or infidels. Muslims will give you the peaceful quotes from Mohammeds time in Mecca but will conveniently skip the later passages of his quotes and actions in Medina. Mohammed performed many beheadings himself and consummated a marriage to a prepubescent girl of nine. Islam is violent tribal superstition not compatible with a Democratic Republic like ours.

  26. If it wasn't a mosque. If they weren't muslim….

    – The neighbors next door would still complain strongly (Not In My Backyard is reliable to the point of cliche)
    – The neighbors a block away and out of sight would complain a little.
    – The neighbors more than a block away mostly wouldn't care or be aware of it.

    There's lots of houses of worship in the area – many next to houses (27th and Ave X, Nostrand and Voorhies, Voorhies and Ocean, etc.), and also ones across from schools (23rd and Neck Rd., Nostrand and Voorhies again, etc.). Somehow the neighborhood has survived all of them. Somehow all the 'issues' the BayPeople point to are dealt with in all these other places. Except, here it's muslims. So we protest. Sigh.

    I'd hope we Christians and Jews, with our histories of fleeing from persecution, could rise above this.

  27. This makes me laugh. The article states the mosque will be made for 150 people. Multiply that by ten.

  28. There are a number of religious institutions near me that are on residential lots. Many have become religious institutions in the past ten years. Many simply took an existing structure and made slight conversions (pun unintended) to it. All were for Christian or Jewish congregations.

    I can't recall a single objection.

    There are a multitude of religious institutions along Ocean Parkway. Some of these are large structures. Ocean Parkway does in fact get the occasional traffic snarl because of the proximity of so many so close by. But they are there and no one would suggest their removal.

    Few cared enough to complain when condo buildings housing 20 families replaced two family homes. Does this not create more of a traffic mess? Many of these structures were not built with adequate parking for residents.

    I suppose all was fine because Muslims weren't presumed to be moving into these buildings.

    I'm extremely angry at the narrow-minded convenient ignorance displayed by a number of people in Sheepshead Bay. I'm almost angry enough to set aside my reservations about events such as this march which have the effect of dividing the community further, despite the well-meaning intentions of those organizing it. The opponents perhaps need to be shown that there are many in the community that recognize that the laws that protect their rights apply to ALL people.

    And the world is watching us now. It's big news.

  29. The implication here is that Muslims multiply like rabbits. That's a very old fear tactic. In the 1800s that was said about the Irish, the Swedes, and a host of other groups.

  30. I wish the Islamic religion would, like you say “recognize that the laws that protect their rights apply to ALL people.” But unfortunately, we know it doesn't. Good luck with the loadspeaker call to prayers in a foreign tongue on our soil. lalalalalalalalalalalalalalaalala. God help us.

  31. The point is the houses on the sides of the )God forbid its going to be built) mosque, will wake up, and the first thing they see is through the window of the mosque. That is the plan of it. This mosque owes every family living in the coop and private houses surrounded by it, like about 100K each, because they will be unsellable. This Allowa guy or w.e ownes a laundromat, and has a million and a half to spare. Shady.. These apartments, houses will sell less then 3/4 of the prices they were bought at. The whole opposition, is that it doesnt benefit any muslim, there are practically none in this neighborhood, and it ruins the lives of all the residents. They are either forced to leave in debt, or stay and sufer.

  32. what about religious holidays, blocking the street? What about the “call of prayer” everyday? This will not disrupt our children? It is unbelievable you would want to build this so close to a school.
    Please donate at Any donations are appriecated

  33. *
    And how come a synagogue was not built close to this neighborhood about a month ago? Because a couple people from the nieghborhood objected saying there would be a slight problem with noise. The synagogue wasnt built. And now we object,and they cry “Racism!” If we offend them so much, then posssibly find another actually suitable place to build

  34. Agree. Who in their right mind would want to leave next to a mosque? and hear the blablabla shit all day long? I already see the nearby property prices getting cut in half. I am glad i live many blocks away.

  35. When I was young all my Jewish friends had one sibling, or none at all.

    My parents wanted two kids. They had twins and that shot that down.

    By the time large numbers of European Jews started coming they were far from the only group than was arriving in significant numbers. So each one of those groups was also accused of diluting the WASP predominance through the practice of having large families.

    All this ignored the fact that large families were not uncommon at all in all groups. Most likely because so many children didn't live to adulthood.

    Nowadays large families are sometimes the outcome of various religious practices. This is not limited to those who are Jewish.

  36. can you guys as k Mr.. Kin the Nighbor of the Mosque How much his House worth ,,
    Muslims Double the price,, and that apply to all the houses around it…

    good for the people who is around the mosque ,,, muslims will buy them for hier prices,,

    His House worth 450k and he was asked to sell it for 600k

    ask him,,
    A gentelman,,,

  37. It was disgusting. There were muslim kids hitting each other with American flags, stepping on them THROWING THEM ON THE GROUND! It enraged me, so much. I was about to call 311. It was disgustin, they were showing middle fingers to us, and attempted to give us roses. I hate this

  38. disgusting. I cant believe it. Those future terrorists have no right to even look at our flag. What has America come to. I miss the days of Gulliani when he said you are not welcome here when the president of pakistan cough cough terrorist dictator decided to come pay us a visit after 9/11.
    While this was happening Michael Bloomberg was checking out Ipads

  39. I accidently took you name sorry, I live close to this neighborhood and it sickens me how the muslims are trying to ruin my neighborhood

  40. Bloomberg's Ipad was recently hacked, I have to laugh at that, as well to the following response to the main post, L-O-L.

    Posting as multiple users? Really?

  41. I leave here for 13th years. Just behind the corner. We have people from different religious including muslims. We are all getting allone. The praying house is differente issue if it built on a small residential street, with just few muslims family living here. It means all this traffic and noise will be created by outsiders who are not well come here. We don't want to have extra security concern also.
    Larry P.

  42. People wake up!! Who do you believe to?
    They named us bigots, having mob mentality, but why do they want to leave in the community like this?
    They would like to destroy America from inside, they moving slowly but sure, they said it after 9/11 and the goal will be fulfilled if we keep silence.

  43. People wake up!! Who do you believe to?
    They named us bigots, having mob mentality, but why do they want to leave in the community like this?
    They would like to destroy America from inside, they moving slowly but sure, they said it after 9/11 and the goal will be fulfilled if we keep silence.

  44. If you are not Muslim, living in the vicinity of a Mosque can be hellish. The noise level is so high due to loudspeakers and you are exposed to it 5 times a day if you like it or not. If your sleeping, or if your sick, if you have a headach or if you just want to relax, there is no consideration at all for you or the environment. It goes on each and every day regardless of your religion.
    Peope who are not Muslim are begining to complain all over the world not against the religion but about the noise levels and lack of respect for others and their way of life if it is not Islam.
    This is not about bigottry it is about the noise level that disturbs every day life and never leaves you. Its about simply forcing a call to prayer on everyone around. The message is to hell with if you like it or not, Allah is the loudest and the great est and that is what is most important. Your rights to a peaceful daily life without the noise disturbance doesnt exist when it comes to to Muslim religion.
    I am a peace loving person and would love to see all religions live together in peace. Unortunately this kind of behaviour propmotes anger and hatred from those who do not want to be called to prayer as it is not their way of life, because the noise level is so disturbingly high and their is a lack of consideration for others who may not be of that religion.
    There is no respect for the fact that you may not want to hear it, as the Muslim law comes first for those of that religion, no matter what country they are in.
    I asked an Muslim woman what she thought about the terrible law that was being carried out in Iran – stonning a woman who has committed adulty, and the woman told me its written in the Koran so it must be done.
    This is the kind of thing you are up against.

  45. It's just a part of islamization.Don't believe them.One day they gonna eat us.
    Pay attention what's going on in Europe. Local socialists leads those countries to collaps.Awake, people!

  46. Money makes the world go around. If you oppose this do not spend your money with the people of islam and instead contrubute to building more temples and churches to push them out. Politicians love conflict because that is what they feed on. I do not have any ill will twards anyone but the mosque will cause trafic and they will be praying outside on the sidewalk causing property values to drop to zero.


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