Hispanic Converts to Islam to Celebrate First Ramadan

September 30, 2005

Source: Sun Sentinel


On September 30, 2005 the Sun Sentinel reported, "This year's Ramadan celebration will be extra special for members of a Margate, [Florida] mosque [Masjid Jamaat Al-Mumineen] who will observe the holiday in a brand new building... Melissa Matos is among some area Muslims who will be celebrating the season for the first time. When she speaks of celebrating her first Ramadan, the 20-year-old clasps her hands excitedly and a smile spreads from ear-to-ear. Matos, who took the shahaddah in order to become a Muslim in April, has started down a path toward a new way of life, a new circle of friends and a tradition that, she said, she knows will teach her to be a better person... Matos represents a growing number of Latin women who are taking the shahaddah and donning the traditional hair covering, called a hijab. Altaf Ali, executive director at the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Pembroke Pines, said Islam is gaining an increasing number of Hispanic converts. 'More so in California, but in Florida it's a new trend.'"