History of the Center
The dream of hundreds of Muslims in Bloomington, Indiana to have a mosque took more than a decade of hard work to come to light. The initiative was taken by the Muslim Student Association (MSA) at Indiana University that used the International Center and other on campus places to perform Friday prayers. This was very inconvenient. In December 1975, MSA bought a house on East 8th Street from a local church and converted it into an Islamic center. The two prayer halls, library and basement were used to their maximum but not without problems. Though the center was in a prime location, it was hard to maintain and had only 8 parking spaces for almost 500 students.
In June 1984, MSA made a historic decision when it bought property for the purpose of building a mosque. The money was provided by Dr. Abdullah Naseef, the secretary general of the Muslim World league. A committee for planning and fund-raising was formed. The vision of early members to build a high-tech spacious Islamic center with classrooms was realized in a design produced by an architectural firm. Although the community donated generously and MSA’s alumni sent large donations from overseas, it was difficult for many students to finance the new project. The money was therefore invested with the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) until 1992, when a decision was made to modify the old plan and build a smaller center that was within the financial ability of the organization. In 1989, the lowest bid for the old plan was at $850,000. Construction of the new center, which consists of two prayer halls, a library and an office, could not be financially achieved without selling the old center. After spending almost half a million dollars, the center, or the house of God according to the Qur’an, was opened for congregation to the entire Bloomington Muslim Community the first Friday of August 1993.