Construction Continues at Masjid Bilal Islamic Center in Los Angeles
Despite the challenging times impacting us all, Masjid Bilal Islamic Center has continued its monumental effort to construct a new Masjid and community center in the heart of Los Angeles. The project has attracted international attention, with visitors and media worldwide visiting the construction site.
The structure, located at Central Avenue and Martin Luther King Blvd, has shown tremendous progress since construction began in 2019. Upon completion, the facility will encompass an entire city block. Its beautiful new minaret is the tallest in California.
Strong community support has fueled the building process with contributions coming from across the nation. However, with a shortfall still exceeding $1 million, the project has a long and arduous path to completion.
"We pay as we go," says Imam Abdul Karim Hasan, the community's long-time religious leader. "Allah has blessed us with some very hard-working and sincere people who have been very diligent in helping us raise funds to continue building."
Construction project manager Hesham Sitita and fundraising committee chairman Ahmed Radwan have dedicated their time and efforts to seeing this historic project through completion.
"This is one the oldest (Muslim community) in California," said Radwan. "What we are doing is building a masjid from the ground up—with a minaret, you will be able to see from a long distance. If we put our hands together, Insha Allah, we can get it done."
The new Masjid's exterior is now complete at Masjid Bilal, and its tall minaret has already become an Islamic beacon for the area. However many more challenging steps still exist.
"Our next step is to complete the interior of the masjid," stated Hesham Sitita, who was instrumental in building the minaret. "We're in the heart of Los Angeles, just blocks from downtown. We have a landmark here. Stop by and visit us. We need your support to complete this magnificent center for Islam."
Masjid Bilal Islamic Center will be the first Masjid built in true Los Angeles, for more than two decades and the first of the new millennium. The project also includes a sprawling two-story community center to serve the area.
"Remember this—we are not just talking about a Masjid. We're also talking about a community center," added Imam Hasan.
"This will be a place where people can come and be orientated into the knowledge of the universality of Al-Islam and the faith of revelation — Where we can have classes to teach the people what they need to know. Language, ethics, etiquette, and those things that matter to us as a society. We are a society living within a society, and it's important that we get along."
Building a Masjid and Community Center is phase two of a three-phase plan the Bilal community has been implementing since 1999. Phase one was a school building completed in 2007, which now provides education to more than 300 kids from the surrounding community.
"We know what an important role this Mosque has played in our community—right here on Central Avenue," stated Councilman Curren Price from the ninth district of Los Angeles.
"This is a facility not just for Muslims, but for others as well. We appreciate the unique role the Mosque is playing, not just in the development of resources for our kids, but for the contribution you're making up and down this corridor and in our city."
The Masjid Bilal community is hoping to complete construction of the new masjid by January of 2023.
"Please, please, we need your help and support," emphasized Ahmed Radwan, Chairman of the Masjid Bilal Fundraising Committee.
"Brothers and sisters, this is your opportunity for eternal and reoccurring blessings. Do not fool yourself, saying I still have my life ahead of myself. We do not know if we're going to make it tomorrow. Please, we ask each one of you to help us and help yourself and share this opportunity with everyone you know."
Donations can be made securely, directly through the Masjid Bilal website.
For mail, send your checks payable to: Masjid Bilal Islamic Center 4016 S. Central Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90011
Donations can also be made by electronic transfer utilizing: Bank of America - Acct# 325110240655 / Routing# 121000358