Topics: Islam, Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Stephen Harper Pages: 2 (429 words) Published: March 25, 2013
Baitun Nur (also spelled Baitunnur or Baitun Noor) (Arabic for "House of Light"[1]) is a mosque of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in the Castleridge community of Calgary, Alberta.[2][3][4] It is known for being the largest mosque in Canada.[2][5][6] It is estimated that there are about 3,000 members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Calgary.[7] Public opening:

The cornerstone of the mosque was laid in 2005.[2] Construction was completed in 2008 for an estimated cost of C$ 15 million,[1] with roughly C$ 8 million of that coming from local Calgarians.[4] Baitun Nur had its grand opening to the public on July 5, 2008, with 5000 people in attendance, including dignitaries such as Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Opposition Leader Stéphane Dion, and Calgary Mayor Dave Bronconnier.[2] The Roman Catholic Bishop of Calgary, Fred Henry, attended as well.[8] Mirza Masroor Ahmad, the supreme head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, oversaw the opening.[2] While members of various faiths were invited, according to Kaufman of the Edmonton Sun, the Sunni Muslim group Islamic Supreme Council of Canada, led by Syed Soharwardy, was not invited, due to its belief that Ahmadiyya Muslims are not “real” Muslims,[9] and did not consider Baitun Nur a “mosque.”[8] Praise for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community came from attendees, including Harper, who said "Calgarians, Albertans and Canadians will see the moderate, benevolent face of Islam in this mosque and the people who worship here." [2] According to Embassy magazine, regarding Harper's remarks, a governing party insider said "It's an important signal the prime minister is sending, not just to militant Islamists abroad, but to their sympathizers here at home, that he's perfectly prepared to ignore them and side with persecuted minorities within the faith. Structure:

The mosque complex is 4,500 m2 (48,000 sq ft) in size.[1] A 97 feet (30 m) tall[10] steel-capped minaret tower and large steel dome are the most...
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