A reader sent me some interesting information…
This is very surprising because second perhaps only to Poland, Slovakia is one of the most Catholic nations in Europe.
In fact, the profound depth of the Catholic faith in Slovakia and the historically ingrained animosity towards Catholicism in Czech was one of the many factors in the ‘velvet divorce’ that saw the division of Czechoslovakia into Czech and Slovakia.
Which is why the construction of a mosque in the staunchly Catholic capital of Slovakia is so very surprising. Emphasis added by me…
Aside: the information was sent to me in Slovak, so if the translation is inaccurate, the fault lies completely with me.
“The citizen association ‘Islam for Slovakia’, in co-operation with Friends of Islam in Bratislava have purchased real estate for the construction of the first mosque in Slovakia.
The first mosque will be built on Kamennom Square next to the department store.
The construction of architect (?) Radoslav Abdulmesih will commence in May 2014.
Within the grounds of the mosque, there will also be created the first Muslim primary school. It’s opening is scheduled for the 2015/2016 school year.
The name of the project: Mosque on Kamenn (Kamennom) Square in Bratislava
Project leader: Ing. Radoslav ‘Abdulmesíh (note: ‘Ing.’ denotes level of education, but not field and is often used as a title)
Lead Builder: Jozef Nagy
Commencement of building (groundbreaking): May 2014 (Ašhadu anna Muhammadan rasúlu-l-láh!)
“Good day, we would like to answer the most frequently asked questions which we have received from you.
The groundbreaking celebration will be held on the 3rd of May, 2014.
The grand opening is planned for the 31st of June, 2015, and the school year 2015/16 will see the opening of grade 1 of primary school at our mosque. In accordance with what we have replied to those who have expressed their interest to us in writing, registration for grade 1 will begin on the 1st of August 2015 and will close on the 16th of August, 2015.
Instruction will follow a bilingual format where the Slovak Language, civics (incl. history and geography) and science shall be taught in Slovak, all other subjects will be taught in Arabic. Starting in grade 3, an additional foreign language may also be selected, we are yet working on this.
Worship will be, as always, every Friday.
The Muezzin will, of course, fulfill his duties and announce all prayer times.
In the rear of the mosque, there will be a small store with Korans, prayer mats and the like.
The fact that some of you don’t agree with the building of this mosque saddens us, but, as you live in a democratic society, you ought to learn to tolerate other people’s needs, not just your own.
If you have other questions, do not hesitate to contact us. ” ‘