Masjid Al-Jamia: Penn's Muslim Students Association and the Mosque in West Philadelphia
In West Philadelphia, at the intersection of Walnut and 43rd Streets, stands a magnificent mosque called the Masjid Al-Jamia. Red bricked and massive, this mosque is one of the oldest and best-known places of worship for Muslims in Philadelphia. In fact, Masjid Al-Jamia was founded in 1988 by a group of University of Pennsylvania students who belonged to the campus chapter of the Muslim Students Association (MSA). This essay seeks to explain the history of this mosque and to consider how its relationship with the Penn MSA evolved in the generation after its founding.