Have you ever been made to feel unwanted in a place by those who behave like they own it? Unfortunately many of the women in our country are made to feel exactly like this, not only during Ramadan, but any time they enter a mosque. It’s not only those who frequent the mosques that stare them down; even the most disinterested people in the area look at them as if to say, “What business do they have here?” Men who have no qualms about engaging with women freely outside the mosque treat a woman inside the mosque as if she “is there to tempt him to sin”. Women, even when we number in the hundreds, cannot peacefully enter some mosques, which a couple of retired uncles have practically turned into nursing home recreation rooms, without their approval; they do everything in their power to push us back.
You who think God’s houses are unnecessary to God’s female servants, if you want your progeny to be people of the qibla, people whose foreheads don’t remain away from the sajda, people whose hearts are full of faith, people who attend mosque with a believing heart- then know that this partly depends on the efforts of those very women you push away from the mosque.
Oh female servants of God, mosques are your refuges, too. Now and always. Even when your feelings are hurt by each stare, each warning, and each criticism, know that joining the mosque congregation is the legacy of our Prophet (s.a.w), and don’t deprive God’s houses from the loving devotion of your hearts.