Muslim worshipers are stunned and hurt by mass killings in New Zealand mosques

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - New Zealand’s mass shooting is sending shock waves around the world and right here at home.

Muslims in the metro are appalled at the two separate attacks that left 49 people dead.

“I find the event horrific,” said Masjid Muhammad Mosque member Candace Abdul-Tawwab.

She is among the worshippers with heavy hearts Friday attending the Day of Congregational Prayer at the Masjid Muhammad Mosque in Jackson.

"I'm just praying for the victims' families and the victims," said Abdul-Tawwab. "It was a hateful act and absolutely disgusting".

Okolo Rashid, with the International Museum of Muslim Cultures, said the museum’s mission is to help visitors understand Islam and what it means to be human.

Okolo Rashid is Co-Founder, President and Director of the Islamic Thought Institute at the International Museum of Muslim Cultures in Jackson. Source: WLBT
Okolo Rashid is Co-Founder, President and Director of the Islamic Thought Institute at the International Museum of Muslim Cultures in Jackson. Source: WLBT

She said this act is not simply a hate crime but an attack on the religion called Islamophobia.

“Even though this happened across the seas in New Zealand and of course it’s considered one of the most peaceful places, a better society, we know that here in America these kinds of issues are very front and center,” said Rashid.

Muslim worshipers in Jackson are appalled and hurt by the New Zealand mass shootings. Source: WLBT
Muslim worshipers in Jackson are appalled and hurt by the New Zealand mass shootings. Source: WLBT

A tragic terrorist attack on a religious institution happened on U.S. soil when 21-year-old Dylann Roof opened fire in a South Carolina Church in June of 2015.

Roof was charged with shooting nine people after attending Bible study in the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Worshipers said they are receiving support from the local interfaith community as they continue to pray for a worldwide understanding of Islam.

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