When the Ahmadiyya Community Centre was targeted by vandals, the Muslim community’s automatic response was to react with kindness.
The Dundee mosque, just off Dens Road, was the victim of vandalism earlier this month. Worshippers turned up for their morning prayers on April 9 to find a window smashed and the main door open.
There were suspicions the attack may have been a hate crime, but members of the mosque were determined the fear would not deter them from spreading goodwill in the community.
The result was a barbecue lunch at the weekend, to which everyone was welcome to join worshippers for a bite to eat and a chance to learn about the work done by the local Muslim community.All is getting ready at #Dundee Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Baitul Mahmood Mosque on Dens Road for Community BBQ. Look forward to welcoming guests.@True_IslamUK@AhmadiyyaUK
The weather on Saturday looked set to threaten the event, but a break in the rain during the afternoon meant the cooking went off without a hitch.
Families of all backgrounds milled around the mosque and its garden, enjoying the food and companionship on offer. Children ran around and played together on swings and slides at the nearby small park.
Shoaib Khan, Ahmadiyya Dundee president, said: “We don’t hold any hard feeling towards the person who did this [the vandalism].
“The reason we organised the barbecue is to show that we are part of the wider community and hopefully the person who broke in will come here and see what we are all about.
“With everything that’s going on in the world, we wanted to show the positive message of our religion.”
Naseh Ahmad, the mosque’s outreach secretary, said: “We believe in being kind to others no matter they may have done to us, so we show them our positive side.
“It was a natural reaction for us to put on something like this rather than barricading ourselves after a vandalism attack.
“We hope that people who come to the lunch learn about us and how we can bring a lot to the local community.”
Nothing was taken during the break-in, but members expressed their shock and sorrow at the time. CCTV footage showed a man inspecting the property before breaking in and smashing a window.
The mosque opened in September 2016 after it was purchased from Dundee City Council as part of an asset transfer deal for £1.