Desiring to practice authentic Islam, a small group of 25 left the Nation of Islam on July 3, 1981 and held Jumaah in living room of one of the families on Hancock Street, Brooklyn, NY. The congregants chose a name: Masjid At Taqwa (God fearing) and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) on August 27, 1981.
As the group grew, a need for adequate masjid space became imperative. They found vacant property on Bedford Avenue and Fulton Street (formerly barber shop, restaurant, and other stores). The new masjid property located at 1266 Bedford Avenue, was purchased on April 2, 1982 [deed recorded on May 27, 1982]. Currently the property is comprised by the Masjid, bakery, bookstore and two general Islamic merchandise stores.
Masjid At Taqwa became famous in January 1988 with 40 days of 24-hour community patrol in partnership with NYC police department to shut down crack drug houses along Fulton Street. Community response was very positive. Appreciative neighbors and business owners commended the Muslim men for their presence at drug sites. As passengers on the Fulton Street bus passed by, they shouted “there are the Muslims” “They shut down the crack houses”
Also famous is the Imam of Masjid At Taqwa – Imam Siraj Wahhaj. He was the first Muslim to offer the prayer for opening session of Congress in 1991. He is invited to give talks and teach by Islamic groups, colleges, prisons and youth organizations all around the world and throughout the United States and Canada.