The Centre renders tremendous services to the Muslim community and the wider society in different ways.
It provides opportunity for worship five times a day for hundreds of Muslims of diverse nationalities especially those living or working in the area. It is thus a forum that strengthens the spirit of Islamic brotherhood. The Jumu’ah or Friday special prayer at the Old Kent Road Mosque is one great service that the Centre provides. There were frequent testimonies to how the khutbahs or sermons changed the life style of many users of the Mosque for the better. The positive impact of the khutbahs attracted increasing numbers of worshippers to the mosque progressively over the years. This led to a regular overflow of worshippers to adjoining premises and road sides, sometimes causing conflicts with neighbours as well as traffic problems. As a solution, we resorted to doing two sessions of the Jumu’ah prayer every Friday. Similarly, for the past ten years or more, ‘Id prayers at the Mosque are done in four or five sessions on every occasion; yet, the Mosque overflows with worshippers at some of the sessions.
The Centre is a venue where an-Nikaah, the Islamic marriage ceremony, is conducted quite frequently. In fact, the Centre has been approved for registry marriages for Muslim couples conducted in a manner that is compliant with the Shari’ah. It is even more frequently used as venue of naming ceremonies for new born babies of the community. On the other hand, Janazah or funeral prayers for members of the community that pass on are conducted at the Centre.
Members of the Muslims Association of Nigeria, UK – the organisation that owns and runs the Centre – as well as other interested individuals hold weekly Dhikr (‘Asalatu’) sessions at the Centre, while regular monthly lectures on topical Islamic issues are delivered by guest lecturers. Besides, meetings of committees of the Association are held at the Centre. Another very important service rendered at the Centre to members of the community is Islamic counselling. Many Muslim families that were likely to have broken down were reconciled through such counselling.
The Centre contributes immensely to the enhancement of understanding among faith communities particularly in the South East London Borough of Southwark. The first few meetings that led to the formation of the Southwark Multi-Faith Forum (SMFF) were held at the Centre. A number of Inter-faith and Multi-faith bodies have visited the Centre and have learnt about Islam in the course of such visits. Similarly, schools in the neighbourhood have visited the Centre and the children and their teachers learnt more about Islam during their visits.
The Old Kent Road Mosque and Islamic Cultural Centre run a good programme of education especially in Qur’anic, Islamic and Arabic Studies. A large number of children and adults are registered in the Centre for both evening and week end classes. Many a well educated and professional Nigerian greatly improved their knowledge of Islam and the Qur’an through the educational services offered at the Centre. The Centre also holds remedial classes in some school subjects for children at the weekend.
It also runs an Elderly Welfare programme with organised outings; welfare visits, in particular house bound elders or resident in community care homes; regular monthly meetings with served dinner including provision of information on health and benefits issues.
Also, has a very active Youth group with activities that includes summer & winter camping; Sisters/Brothers Arabic and hadith classes
The Old Kent Road also have Outreach programmes, and increasingly use the Mosque to provide refuge for individual Muslims that are homeless. In addition we continue to engage in wider community involvement with the Southwark Muslim Forum, the National Council for the Welfare of the Muslims Prisoners, and Union Of Muslim Organisations.
The Management of the Muslim Association of Nigeria (UK) is its Executive Committee.
Our mission with the proposed new Islamic centre is to create a centre of excellence providing a range of holistic and inclusive services.
For full details and updates on our programmes for the year, please click on the links below