Early Sunday morning, the Islamic Center of Fort Collins was vandalized.
According to the Cassa Niedringhaus of the Coloradoan, at around 4 a.m. on Sunday morning, a man in his 20s tried to break into the Islamic Center using a screwdriver and rocks. There were broken windows, furniture had been overturned and a Bible thrown into the prayers room. Niedringhaus reports that rocks were thrown through the windows so hard that they “scuffed the opposing wall.”
This was a terrible act of hate that has left our Muslim friends in terror. Many have said they no longer feel safe in their own community. “It’s always hard to cope with such tragic events like this, and sometimes because we live in such a great city, I forget that people capable of such horrible things exist,” said Israa Eldeiry, former president of the Muslim Student Associate at CSU.
Hillel takes pride in participating in multiple interfaith events throughout the semester. From Interfaith Thanksgiving to Avi Schaefer Interfaith Shabbat, we strive to make sure the Muslim community feels safe and comfortable in the Fort Collins community. We have created bonds with them and created friendships that will last a lifetime.
Later in the day, hundreds of people showed up at the Islamic Center to show their support for the Islamic community. “To see the whole community come together and see hundreds of people condemning the acts of an individual is restoring the faith I have in humanity and this community,” said Eldeiry. “My heart is so content and happy and I am so thankful to live in such an incredible place like Fort Collins.”
It was a horrible incident that happened on Sunday morning, but we must now show our support and let our Muslim friends know that this is still their home. We will strive to make sure that something like this will never happen again by educating the community and banding together.
You are our colleagues, you are our mentors, you are our friends. CSU Hillel stands with the Fort Collins Muslim community.