The above photo shows what the new mosque would look like. It would start off as a 4,100 square-foot mosque and eventually be almost 25,000 square-feet. That clearly is for the hoards of Islamics that the Islamic Center hope to have attend the new mosque.
The opposition is being led by Pastor Bill Rench of Calvary Baptist Church. One comment that Pastor Bill made is, regrettably, correct:
The pastor of Calvary Baptist Church, just across a cul-de-sac from the site of the mosque, said the two religions "mix like oil and water"
Just ask Coptic Christians in Egypt. Or Christians in Saudi Arabia. Oops! My bad. There are NO Christians in Saudi Arabia. They are banned with any other religion that is not Islamic. The pastor is correct.
Now, one way that the Islamic Center of Temecula Valley can diffuse the potential problem is to be in the forefront in condemning the radical elements of Islam. These Islamics must stand for the rights of women. They must stand for religious freedom and tolerance. They must say unequivocally NO to terrorists that act in the name of Islam.
But I believe that they will play the victim rather than be proactive in gaining community support.
The area that this mosque is being proposed is conservative and a place that strongly attracts Evangelical Christians. If you look at the mosque, it would serve as a reminder that Islam believes that they are on the rise. It is a large undertaking for a minuscule faith community.
This little version of Mosque Wars does not have the emotional element of the 9/11 mosque proposal. But it is an indicator of many more skirmishes that will not go away anytime soon.