Let's be realistic. If mosques want the youth back, they need to be more in tune with what the youth want. It seems like mosques all over the country and in every city plan big events and activities during NFL playoff games. That should be a sin. Mosques, churches, synagogues, temples, and other religious institutions need to stop complaining about youth involvement when they continually slap the youth in the face.
Who plans a large community activity on an NFL Sunday during a game? Even worse, during playoff games? The NFL lasts only 17 weeks, and has an extra 5 weeks of playoffs. They spend the entire off season planning for those 16 games. Most teams are still alive well after week 10. Why on earth would mosques push away the new generation by planning events for those Sundays? Even sillier is planning youth events for those Sundays. Especially, if you live in a city that has an NFL franchise.
The National Football League is America's favorite game. It's our past time. It's our life. People live and die by their team's success or woes. Fourteen of the 15 most watched television programs of 2010, were random NFL games. People would rather watch a meaningless NFL game between two non-playoff teams, than watch game 7 of the World Series of Baseball. A few years ago, the NFL was asked to move a Sunday night game to a different day, so that people would actually watch one of the World Series baseball games. That is how powerful the NFL is!
Mosques and religious leaders need to embrace this enthusiasm for America's Game and America's Sport! Instead of criticizing the youth for being "overly concerned about meaningless games", they should embrace this American tradition and find ways to incorporate the NFL into their youth activities. The older generation needs to embrace everything that is inherently American in their youth, and find new ways to attract youth to mosques.
How awesome would it be for a Mosque to invest in Direct TV's NFL Sunday ticket (about $300) and have all the youth and their friends come to the mosque to watch all the NFL games, all day long, in HD. They can watch the RedZone Channel and go from game to game and not have to watch a single commercial. Wouldn't that be awesome? Of course, they would take breaks for prayers, have pizza and pop, and a very nice air or camaraderie. This is an awesome way to attract youth to the mosque, and to have more Muslim friends and Muslim peers.
By youth, we mean anyone under the age of 40. Sure, it would include college kids, high schoolers, some of the guys who already graduated college and are now working. It'd be a lot of fun and a great way to pass on values, identity, and etiquette from one generation to the next.
Next time your mosques plans an activity, ask them if it will interfere with NFL football. If so, who are they targeting and who are they pushing away?