The category of Persian and Urdu speaking Shia community in Germany is made up of three separate yet cooperative groups.
- Afghan Shia community in Germany: they participate in other Shia communities in Germany, especially in linguistically related Persian-speaking communities. There are also distinct Afghan communities, such as the one which was visited during Ramadan 2015, when a large congregation assembled in a former factory hall, which had been bought by one entrepreneur family of several brothers, who de facto led the community and paid for most of the costs. To know more about the Afghan Shia community in Afghanistan you can read the related post on our website.
- Pakistani Shia community in Germany: there are at least two such community. Although one is generally only active during religiously important periods of the year, the other, also small, is active in providing courses for children and It shares its rooms with an Arabic-speaking community of Iraqi and Lebanese origin. They conduct ceremonies together, somewhat dominated in the “canonical” rituals, such as ritual prayer, by the Arabic-speakers because of their competence in the language, but the Pakistanis have their own rituals in Urdu, usually after the Arabic-speakers have finished. This is another kind of symbiosis. A listing is available on our Shia directory for one of these communities and you can read about the Shia community of Pakistan in our blog posts.
- Iranian Shia community in Germany: In addition to these rather small and less well-known examples, there are also long-established Shia mosque communities, such as the Islamisches Zentrum Hamburg. This is one of the oldest Islamic institutions in Europe and consists of the Imam Ali Mosque, an Academy and a socio-cultural center with a library; it is led by clerics, officially sent from The same holds true for the much younger Islamisches Zentrum Frankfurt, which has just settled into a new building. It is also led by an Iranian cleric. Both leading clerics are very active in the IGS, which illustrates the desire of the Islamic Republic to take a leading role among the Shia Muslims in Germany.
Taken from: Shiite “Communities of Practice” in Germany
by: Robert Langer and Benjamin Weineck