Muslim elders pose for a photo after Minneapolis City Council approves a motion to allow the call to prayer to be broadcast five times a day. (Elijah Todd-Walden/BLCK Press)
The Minneapolis City Council moved forward Wednesday afternoon on an ordinance that would allow mosques to use speakers to broadcast the call to prayer five times per day.
Most Muslims pray five times each day: before dawn, early afternoon, late afternoon, after sunset, and at night. The city only began allowing the broadcast of the Muslim prayer - or “adhan” - in March 2022. Minneapolis currently allows the broadcast of call to prayer only between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.
“Today we are asking you to do something that is historic,” said CAIR MN’s Executive Director Jaylani Hussein. “I came to this great city in 1993. I’ve been living here without one thing that makes Muslims Muslims - and that is the call to prayer. What you see in front of you is an ordinance that allows us to fully live out our faith.”
“This is good,” said Lutheran Trinity Congregation Pastor Jane Bucklee-Farley. “This is good because this is their home, and it is nice to have the call to prayer throughout the day so they can be the best Muslims they can be.”
Lutheran, Jewish, and Catholic worshipers came to City Hall to support the bill, saying that expanding religious freedoms for all worshipers benefits the community as a whole. Muslim faith leaders and elders spoke in support of the ordinance change as well.
Via CityofMinneapolis on YouTube
The ordinance aligns Minneapolis’s noise compliance rules with the rest of the state. Minnesota allows exceptions for religious sounds, like bell chimes. The new ordinance applies those exceptions to the five calls to prayer.
The vote to pass the motion, drafted by council member Aisha Chugtai, was unanimous. Final action on the motion is expected at the next council meeting.