San Pedro is truly a melting pot of cultures and with these cultures come different traditions and religions. There are many groups that practice different religions; we have the Catholics, Jehovah Witnesses, Christians and Adventists who have established houses of worship on the island.
Did you know that the island has had a Mosque for over a year now? A mosque is a building dedicated for Islamic worship, here they gather for their daily five prayers and Friday congregation sermons held with a high volume of attendance. Maybe because it’s located in the San Pedrito Area, Ambergris Today (like many) was not even aware of the Al Akramine Mosque. Yes, the island has its own Mosque where Muslims gather for prayer on a weekly basis.
Today, we have a strong Muslim presence on the island that is growing along with the community of San Pedro. Just a couple weeks ago, a group of Muslim men arrived on the island dressed in their traditional clothes, causing heads to turn and people to stare. The Muslims we see on a regular basis look a lot different. The group was traveling around the world and was hosted by the Muslim community on the island.
We have also learnt that the leader of the Muslin community in San Pedro is also called by managers of resorts of North Ambergris Caye when Muslims arrive to the island and are seeking a place of worship. Indeed, this comes to show how diverse our little island is and how much growth it has experienced in the past few years.
(A Mosque serves as a place where Muslims can come together for prayer as well as a center for information, education and dispute settlement. The Imam leads the group in prayer; all Muslim authorities hold the consensus opinion that only men may lead prayer for men. Nevertheless women prayer leaders are allowed to lead prayer in front of all-female congregations.)