Muslims explored South America long before Columbus “discovered” the Americas and Islam was the second monotheistic religion introduced in post-Columbian America after Catholicism.
Despite these facts, Islam has had a tragic past in Latin America and only recently have Muslims begun to reclaim their identity and their heritage. Latin Americans have come to know Islam largely through the behaviors of their Muslim neighbors: prayer, fasting, abstention of pork and alcohol. Muslims often face a variety of issues as minorities in South America: concerns regarding modesty in dress, political participation, practicing their religion, and civic involvement.
Today, Latin America has a vibrant Muslim minority which is committed to practice their religion, to increase awareness among fellow Muslims of authentic Islam, and to establish a niche for themselves in their adopted homelands as productive citizens devoted to the betterment of their countries.