Islamic Center of Saint Joseph

Masjid History

A brief history of the Islamic Center of St. Joseph:

  • May 2008: Five Muslims in St. Joseph organize the first Friday congregational services (Jumu’ah prayers) in the basement of a member’s home.
  • August 2008: Prayer services moved to a leased storefront at 2407 Messanie St. As word gets out, numbers to Friday services reach about 20 regular attendees.
  • December 2008: Purchase of a 1-acre parking lot at 2325 Messanie Street for $20,000 as location for city’s first purpose-built masjid. Land formerly contained a bar and grill that had burned a year prior.
  • July 2009: Approval of constitution and bylaws for ICSJ. Members of Executive Committee and Board of Directors appointed.
  • October 2009: ICSJ incorporated as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.
  • November 2009: Plans for new Masjid submitted to the City of St. Joseph.
  • January 2010: ICSJ begins fundraising campaign, rattling tin cups at nine masjids in Missouri, Kansas, and Nebraska. Members also privately solicit family and friends in California, Arizona, Texas, and New York.
  • February 2010: With fundraising efforts reaping better collections than expected, new masjid plans evolve from simple pre-fabricated metal building into a traditional wood-stucco facility. Volunteer General Contractor in Kansas City joins project.
  • March 2010: St. Joseph City Council unanimously approves plans for new mosque.
  • May 2010: Groundbreaking on new masjid. More than $100,000 raised for new masjid construction.
  • August 2010: Completion of first phase: pouring of foundation, construction of exterior of facility, and fabrication of dome.
  • November 2010: Muslims in St. Joseph anxiously await completion of new masjid as community outgrows its temporary digs with nearly 40 persons regularly attending Friday services at leased storefront masjid.
  • December 2010: More than $200,000 raised for new mosque construction. Tenth revert to Islam gives Shahdah (declaration of faith) at ICSJ since Muslims in St. Joseph organized in 2008.
  • January 2011: A dream realized when City of St. Joseph grants an occupation permit to ICSJ. The new building has two prayer halls, two washrooms, an office, a warming kitchen, a multipurpose area, and parking for 55 vehicles. The new masjid accommodates 264 persons.
  • March 2011: More than 400 people visit the mosque’s grand opening. Visitors came from various walks of life including churches, our neighbors, local officials and police officials, and businesses and construction workers who helped build the mosque.
  • May 2011: New fence erected around mosque to enclose children’s playground on front lawn of masjid.
  • July 2011:  Eleventh revert to Islam gives Shahdah (declaration of faith) at ICSJ since Muslims in St. Joseph organized in 2008. The new Muslim was challenged to learn about Islam by a user on YouTube.
  • January 2014: Plans submitted to City of St. Joseph and fundraising campaign launches to construct a separate multipurpose event building catty-cornered to masjid to accommodate Iftars, community gatherings, and other celebrations.
  • April 2014: The St. Joseph mosque partners with Missouri Western State University’s Law Enforcement Academy for an outreach effort. Police cadets visit the Islamic Center to get a better understanding of the Muslim community and its religious practices. 
  • March 2015: The ICSJ congregation teams up with ICNA-Relief Kansas City to have begin a monthly “Feed the Hungry” outreach effort. Each month, volunteers go out into the St. Joseph community and feed homeless or partner with a local hunger relief agency like Interserv’s St. Joseph Shelter to feed the needy.