County Gives Sufi Sanctuary Permit to Build

Planning officials accepted the sanctuary's proposal to use parking at nearby schools.

County officials issued a building permit Friday to a Sufi sanctuary slated for unincorporated land between Lafayette and Walnut Creek. The move surprised opponents of the project who thought that parking issues remained an obstacle to construction.

The Sufi Reoriented sanctuary will use parking from nearby schools associated with the group, according to the Contra Costa Times, which reported that shovels could go into the ground as early as Friday.

Read more Patch coverage of the Sanctuary:

County Board Approves Sufi Project

Saranap Residents Divided By Sanctuary Plan

County Planning Commission OKs Sufism Reoriented Facility


michael frederick February 20, 2013 at 10:21 PM
Born and Raised, You obviously participate here to make e-friends, anonymously. I'm just into addressing the issue at hand, with whatever substantiation and reason I can. If you want to make friends, one-on-one, pick up the phone or write a letter -- don't post in a public forum, particularly on serious matters people care about. Your assumption that people should care more about not bruising anonymous guy's ego over issues impacting their neighborhood might be mistaken. Asking for elaboration on public assertions is "demeaning"? We have a lot of guys on commissions downtown that express the same view, publicly! My sense is, if those assertions had any substantiation or reason behind them, they shouldn't be.
Born and Raised February 22, 2013 at 06:15 PM
OK michael, then let's talk about your ego for a second. Do you really think that your opinion about this project and how you view being railroaded by the Walnut Creek's planning comission is the only imminent one? You go on and on about it as if it's your crusade and that's fine but you're inability to see anything beyond your own anger blinds you to getting anywhere but maybe acting like a blowhard on a less than large press venue (being Patch). Your acting as a three year old screaming a yelling about not getting your way and that's about it. If you had any true validity in your arguments then the project would not have gone forward, correct? In a way I'm glad the project continues, if for no other reason than to give you an outlet for your anger because it seems that you had more than enough before this project was even conceived. You make thinly veiled insults as if you believe you're superior in some way and that it somehow blosters your argument. Again I'll ask, how's that working out for you so far?
lovelafayette February 22, 2013 at 06:50 PM
Is it true that the Sufi's orchestrated a takeover of the Saranap Homeowners Association by having droves of sufi members join (NOT all from Saranap, from as far away as SoCal) so that they held a supermajority, and they presented the project to the supervisors as being "approved" by this decades old group. And that the actual homeowners lost control of the $9000 in the organizations bank account? And that the real home owners formed a new group with restrictions about residency? All legal because of the way the original bylaws were written to encourage membership by area businesses, but in My Book morally, ethically and spiritually wrong. Do sufi's believe in the golden rule?
michael frederick February 22, 2013 at 10:32 PM
lovelafayette, Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, and apparently not. The "honorable" Sufi Joe, above, is the HOA prez! Most "religions" include a moral component that has been stabbed, beaten, and left in a ditch by this group. The county rewarding such would be my major complaint. Through most of the group's lobbying I was indifferent, even supportive: It's your land, build what you want (under the assumption there was county oversight). My grandparents, then I, had lived at 1343 Blvd Way for many years. Whatever this group did over forty years at the Holy Ghost Hall was of no concern, as it didn't impact anyone. There was no religious persecution, just indifference. In early 2000, Congress passed RLUIPA which conveyed upon religions land use protections against discrimination. After forty years of operation in the area, guess who became a religion? Religious persecution and the threat of costly litigation became the RLUIPA leverage used to steam-roll a weak-minded and broke county. Also timely, after forty years, Sufis decided to take over the HOA, to act as its spokesman! What initially caught my eye was Dacus condemning "NIMBYs" on the JCC, NEVER mentioning that his religion had a pending project up the street, hinging upon addressing neighbor concerns. This is "good" -- he's the Prez! As B&R mentioned, this is probably a done deal. However, it's important that ridiculous tactics and methodology be recognized for precedent's sake.
Joseph David Dacus February 26, 2013 at 09:37 PM
If the majority of a board opposes a project, and there is an election, and they are STILL the majority afterwards, explain how a minority "took over" the group? I'm fair at math. Walk me through how they were taken over? These repeated falsehoods about a takeover are bogus. There was no takeover. They QUIT! Sensible people in the Saranap recognize this, but you can't. Of 11 board members, 8 opposed the project BEFORE it had even been submitted for review. That prompted me, and one other person, to run in 2008. I professionally perform design reviews for all kinds of projects. The coercion of neighbors came from those OPPOSED going door to door spreading fearful false rumors about a project they had not even been sent to review by the County (they had done it before). The SCA leaders ran vetted opposition candidates. Some didn't even live in the Saranap! THIS was the rush to judgment, and caused 2 other candidates to run who also saw the unfairness of these tactics. Your statements are just more spreading of old tired false rumors, filled with purposely vague innuendos of wrongdoing that were ALL repeatedly shown untrue, and discounted on the facts. I was elected board president in 2012, AFTER the project was approved. RLUIPA is a protection if approvals are not secured, but they were, on the projects many merits! www.SaranapOnline.org


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