The Islam Center of Smithfield opened Saturday in Smithfield.
The Islam Center is located in the former Pentecostals of Smithfield Church Building located at 3020 South Brightleaf Boulevard. The former church recently closed.
In a special ceremony Saturday morning, crosses that were removed from the former Pentecostal house of worship were handed over to Pastor Jim Melnyk from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. It is the only mosque in Johnston County. A former mosque in Selma closed several years ago.
According to the Islam Center of Smithfield website, the number of members has increased fourfold in the past 2 years.
“The idea of having a permanent location for the Masjid arose and became necessary to meet the community growth and needs as this Masjid the only Masjid in Johnston county… We are kindly asking you to help us spreading the word of ”La ilaha illa Allah” in Johnston County,” the website reads.
According to the Johnston County Tax Office, the 1.96 acre site was purchased on April 6, 2017 by Waiel and Mohamad Mohamad of Smithfield for $230,000. The property also includes the former church parsonage located next door.