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In the Name of God بسم الله
mulla_sadra

What are the best cities in the US for Shias?

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Salaam Shia Chat community,

I currently live with my wife and two babies in a somewhat remote part of the country with minimal Shia presence. We are trying to plan the next phase of life and seek work and relocation to an area/city that would be good for raising kids, both in terms of its general culture and amenities, but also in terms of Shia presence. What would you say are the "top" cities/metro areas in the US for Shia mosques, madrasas, schools, communities etc ??

I've heard Chicago is strong, as well as the NYC Metro area. We want to stay in the Northeast or Midwest preferably (no interest in Texas, Florida etc...), I've also heard that the DC Metro area is strong (Maryland, Virginia). 

What does the community think? It's unfortunate, because there are some cities I love which are really nice and thriving, such as Boston and Seattle... but they are utterly useless in terms of having a strong Shia presence. I want my kids to have culture and access to religious institutions and communities. Any advice would be appreciated. 

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Yes we are familiar with Dearborn and have visited many times. The community and religious resources there are amazing. Masha'Allah it's a beautiful community.

Unfortunately, the Greater Detroit area is economically devastated and likely to face further decline. We are looking to areas with more economic and social opportunity. 

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4 hours ago, mulla_sadra said:

Yes we are familiar with Dearborn and have visited many times. The community and religious resources there are amazing. Masha'Allah it's a beautiful community.

Unfortunately, the Greater Detroit area is economically devastated and likely to face further decline. We are looking to areas with more economic and social opportunity. 

Salaam Alaykum

I live in Chicago, and I do have some activities at Shia Mosques here. There is one shia mosque in Chicago called MASOM. Here is the link(you can see address and Sheikh of the mosque):

http://masom.com

There is one Shia mosque at Streamwood called baitulilm which is one hour drive from Chicago. Here is the link(baitulilm is جامع mosque):

http://www.baitulilm.org

There is one Shia mosque at Glendale Heights(one hour drive from Chicago). I don't know the link. Most people over there are from India. I attended this mosque several times.

There is one Irshad Learning Center at Naperville (one hour drive from Chicago) which are mostly Iranians. I am active in this mosque and help in their programs. They send emails to all members regarding programs. They also advertise in Telegram(social media).

If you ask me where you should go, go to a city which is good for your children. I personally like Dearborn, but I don't know anything of their programs. There is one Shia school, full time, at Schaumburg Illinois called Hadi. This is very good, since your children can go to Shia school and you don't need to be worried about inappropriate normal school teachings. Some people send their children to Christian or Sunni schools, but I don't recommend it. One Iranian said my child asking about Jesus.

It's very important the place you go and the school you send your children. If you have shia school in that area, you have peace of mind. Moreover, I saw that you are looking for a perfect place which is good both in economy and religion. You need compromise. Otherwise, you spend a lot of time on this and I don't think you can find such a place. I personally like Dearborn, but as I said I don't know that much of their programs. I want my children to have Shia friends. Plus I want my family to have access to mosque easily. That's why I said Dearborn.

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2 hours ago, AmirAlmuminin Lover said:

Moreover, I saw that you are looking for a perfect place which is good both in economy and religion. You need compromise. 

People that I know will live in the best place where their children go to school, even if the mother or father have to drive 90 minutes away to get to their job. Commuting is a fact of life in the US. 

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Does anyone know if there are Shia mosques in Seattle? Iman and Zainab do not exist anymore, I want to move there for work, but it seems the shia community is not active?

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I know Michigan has a strong Shia presence but I think they are mostly Arab(not a bad thing but may not be as comfortable if you aren’t Arab yourself)

Jersey has multiple mosques, including Indian and Pakistani majority mosques. Other places with various ethnic communities and a large/active Shia community(that I know have/have been to) include Chicago, Pennsylvania (Allentown, Philadelphia), New York (NYC, Long Island, Queens), Delaware, and Maryland. I can provide the details if needed for any of these places. Good luck 

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D.C. area has Shia presence and community amenities, but the cost of living is insanely high. You might want to send your children to private schools depending on the school quality in a particular area. 

Nowhere else in Virginia has a significant Shia community as far as I can tell, though there are other parts of the state that have excellent schools and decent economy. If you don't mind travel for religious activities, some Richmond suburbs and Williamsburg areas are nice to live and raise a family. 

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3 hours ago, Nevsevug said:

I know Michigan has a strong Shia presence but I think they are mostly Arab(not a bad thing but may not be as comfortable if you aren’t Arab yourself)

Most Shia communities in North America will fall under one group or another. Even the large metropolitan cities with diverse populations will have multiple masjids that split along national/cultural/linguistic lines.

So there’s no way to avoid it.

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2 hours ago, Reza said:

Most Shia communities in North America will fall under one group or another. Even the large metropolitan cities with diverse populations will have multiple masjids that split along national/cultural/linguistic lines.

So there’s no way to avoid it.

Oh, I agree. I was just thinking of my own community and how there aren’t many programs in English or other languages. It’s unfortunate and there are many new people we see that eventually disappear because most of the elders don’t speak English or anything else. There isn’t much of a budget (they can barely pay their bills) so we barely have any English speakers/programs. Luckily we have more Masjids (especially more revert friendly ones) in the same city. I don’t know what it’s like in Michigan but I thought it would make sense to let the poster know. I apologize if it was out of line. 

Edited by Nevsevug

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On 12/16/2017 at 10:35 AM, mulla_sadra said:

Salaam Shia Chat community,

I currently live with my wife and two babies in a somewhat remote part of the country with minimal Shia presence. We are trying to plan the next phase of life and seek work and relocation to an area/city that would be good for raising kids, both in terms of its general culture and amenities, but also in terms of Shia presence. What would you say are the "top" cities/metro areas in the US for Shia mosques, madrasas, schools, communities etc ??

I've heard Chicago is strong, as well as the NYC Metro area. We want to stay in the Northeast or Midwest preferably (no interest in Texas, Florida etc...), I've also heard that the DC Metro area is strong (Maryland, Virginia). 

What does the community think? It's unfortunate, because there are some cities I love which are really nice and thriving, such as Boston and Seattle... but they are utterly useless in terms of having a strong Shia presence. I want my kids to have culture and access to religious institutions and communities. Any advice would be appreciated. 

NYC is good my friend. But very expensiew (misspelled on purpose, I’m trying to show New Yorkers are dumb, becuase we are) 

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We are less than a million in a country of 320mil people hence very important to live in areas where you have sizeable Shias around so you could have a community. 

Having lived in many places, here’s my list of diverse Shia population:

NYC, NJ - suburbs are not that expensive, Houston, DC suburbs including Northern Virginia and Maryland upto Baltimore, LA but distances are way too much for me, Chicago, Orlando, Atlanta, Dallas 

But please do make a move. It’s absolute necessary for kids growing up seeing Shias around.

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58 minutes ago, Ralvi said:

NYC is good my friend. But very expensiew (misspelled on purpose, I’m trying to show New Yorkers are dumb, becuase we are) 

Pennsylvania or Jersey may be better in terms of cost of living. 

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4 hours ago, AMR5 said:

We are less than a million in a country of 320mil people hence very important to live in areas where you have sizeable Shias around so you could have a community. 

Having lived in many places, here’s my list of diverse Shia population:

NYC, NJ - suburbs are not that expensive, Houston, DC suburbs including Northern Virginia and Maryland upto Baltimore, LA but distances are way too much for me, Chicago, Orlando, Atlanta, Dallas 

But please do make a move. It’s absolute necessary for kids growing up seeing Shias around.

Which suburbs of nyc you find not be expensive?

currently a strugggling NY’er here 

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I did a quick search on the term “Shia” on google trends and parsed it by the cities. 

Although all stats are somewhat skewed, but this is a good indicator of the word Shia searches in the United States in few months period in 2018. 

You could redo the search on other popular terms like ‘majlis’, ‘hussain’, and ‘Muharram’ to see where most Shia related searches are originating from. These could make you high priority cities. 

https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?q=Shia&geo=US

 

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On 12/16/2017 at 11:03 AM, AmirAlmuminin Lover said:

There is one Shia mosque at Glendale Heights(one hour drive from Chicago). I don't know the link. Most people over there are from India. I attended this mosque several times.

http://iechusaini.org/

IEC Husaini. 

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On 1/12/2019 at 12:40 PM, AMR5 said:

We are less than a million in a country of 320mil people hence very important to live in areas where you have sizeable Shias around so you could have a community.

Last Census had 3 million Muslims in America. If we do the standard 10% of all Muslims are Shia equation then that puts us only at around 300,000 Shia in America.

That census was done a few years so not sure what the current # is at but I would wager that its around that same figure give or take a few thousand.

Edited by Akbar673

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On 1/12/2019 at 9:21 AM, notme said:

D.C. area has Shia presence and community amenities, but the cost of living is insanely high. You might want to send your children to private schools depending on the school quality in a particular area. 

Nowhere else in Virginia has a significant Shia community as far as I can tell, though there are other parts of the state that have excellent schools and decent economy. If you don't mind travel for religious activities, some Richmond suburbs and Williamsburg areas are nice to live and raise a family. 

Richmond is pretty good, very affordable and no crazy traffic. You don't need to be stuck in traffic for hours to get to work. There's a pretty decent community, not huge by any means, but you get all the Muharram lectures and the Ramadhan programs. Some people have complained of racism and bigotry against immigrants, but apart from one incident, I have never felt it. So much of what you hear is fearmongering anyway. 

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