And during the World Cup, it has even attracted more tourists, specifically non-Muslim foreigners who are curious at every call of prayer for Muslims. Many have been entering the courtyard of the mosque and taking souvenir photos.
The Katara Cultural Village has seen thousands of visitors each day having lined-up hundreds of art, culture and entertainment activities coinciding with FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
It has set up a lounge near the mosque which also has a sign put up which says: “Ask me about women in Qatar.” At the lounge, foreign women visitors can sit and drink tea and coffee, and learn about social life in Qatar with a number of volunteers answering their queries.
Volunteer Umm Ahmed said: “The aim of preparing this place near the mosque is to introduce foreigners to the Qatari culture of clothing, food and drink, customs and traditions, and most of their questions are about social relations of the Qatari family and marriage traditions. Their social questions are mostly on the life of a Muslim based on Islamic values. Many of the visitors admit that their view of Islam and Muslims was tainted by a lot of unjustified prejudice, but being in Qatar has helped change their views a hundred and eighty degrees.”
At the entrance to the mosque, there are employees and preachers from the Qatar Guest Centre to introduce Islam to the Eid Charity Foundation. They receive non-Muslims and answer their questions and inquiries about the mosque. They also organize their entry to the mosque after prayers for people to get to know the inside atmosphere of a mosque.