When you walk down Germantown’s antiquated cobblestone streets, you see a diverse pool of people from block to block. On one block you see people wearing Muslim clothing, and on another block you see people dressed in regular street wear.
Christianity and Islam are the two dominating and integral religions in the Germantown community. Religion, in general, is an influential and important factor that leads many in the community of Germantown.
Compelling People to Christ Worship Center
Community service is a large part of the Compelling People to Christ Worship Center, located on 5245 Germantown Ave. Distributing food to lower income families as well as serving food on Thursdays and Sundays is routine for the church. The organization’s back-to-school program is on the rise, and features school supplies and clothes for those in need.
Having fun while maintaining the principles of Christianity is a major tenet of New Hope. They practice this through various activities like Youth Group and Spoken Word.
Ummie’s Kiddie Kottage 2 DCLC
Ummie’s Kiddie Kottage 2 DCLC, located on 5040 Germantown Ave., is geared towards Islamic education and character-building. For seven years, the preschool teachers have taught and cared for about 100 young ones, ranging from infants to 13 year olds.
They incorporate Islam into the children’s daily routines by going about things they do at home in Arabic and also focusing on the Quran for an hour per day beginning at age 3.
New Redeem Apostolic Church
New Redeem Apostolic Church of Germantown, located on 5001 Germantown Ave., has been a cornerstone in the community for more than 100 years.
While the area faces issues like poverty and drugs, the church members combat these adversities by serving food, along with providing after school programs and camp.
Assistant pastor Robert Pettyjon also makes it a focus of his to take young men out car washing to make money, in order to show them other ways of making money than selling drugs.
Masjid As-Sunnah An-Nabawiyyah
Masjid As-Sunnah An-Nabawiyyah has been around since 1994, offering daily classes, educational weekend programs and community outreach on Islam, said Isa Underdue, the mosque’s minister community leader.
Located on 4944 Germantown Ave., it is a center point for Germantown’s predominantly Salafi Muslim community.
Daar Al-Ilm, which translates from Arabic to mean “home of knowledge,” is a Muslim book and clothing store located on 5020 Germantown Ave. They are very intertwined with the Salafi Muslim community, offering classes on Islam as well as religious counseling.
“We try to change people’s character in this neighborhood,” said Sakina Green, owner of Daar Al-Ilm. “There are a lot of problems but we try to direct people on the right path. Islam is for everyone. It’s a religion of piety and modesty and that’s what we show and teach.”
-Text and photos by Rose Daraz and Nikki Svec.