Font Size
Alyssa Schukar
An American Mosque
July 28, 2017
It's a story ten years in the making: reporter Monique Parsons follows two men as they struggle to build and grow the first mosque in a midwestern suburb.
Alyssa Schukar
Building a Mosque in the Suburbs: From Blueprints to Bullet Holes July 28, 2017
It’s not easy to build a mosque in the United States, especially these days. As a visual symbol of Islam, mosques are often shrouded in suspicion and even considered potential incubators for terror plots. So when two Muslims in a Chicago suburb decided to build the town’s very first Muslim house of worship, they knew it would be hard. But not this hard. Religion reporter Monique Parsons spent ten years following the story of the mosque, the Prayer Center of Orland Park, from its contested construction in 2006, to the time someone opened fire on the building in 2014, up through the presidential election of 2016.

Reporting by Monique Parsons
Editing by Deborah George and Cate Cahan
Producing and sound design by Derek John
Production assistance by Luke Vander Ploeg
Funding from the Gruber Family Foundation and a Ford Foundation Knight Grant for Reporting on Religion in American Public Life
Originally aired on WBEZ -- hear the original, longer version here

The mosque was designed to look like the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, one of the holiest sites in Islam. Photo by Alyssa Schukar.

Aanisah Mubarak, 20, enjoys Friday Night Live, a youth group that gathers on the first floor. Photo by Alyssa Schukar.
World Religions 101: Islam July 28, 2017
After ten years of reporting on the Prayer Center of Orland Park, Monique Parsons had to leave a lot of good tape on the cutting room floor -- including much of the mosque's theological teachings. So we decided to fill in some of the gaps. We revisit our popular interview with Stephen Prothero on what makes Islam unique.

This interview is part of World Religions 101, our crash course on eight of the world's spiritual traditions—what they believe, where they come from, and how they’re different from each other