A Muslim public prayer was held on Sunday night but the turn out wasn't quite as expected.

The event at Hastings Sport Centre on Sunday at 4pm was meant to see around 300 people attend the full community prayer, but only about half that number arrived.

"We did cater for 300 but obviously we don't have that many here," Multicultural Association Hawke's Bay president Rizwaana Latiff said.

"We did expect more but it is still great to see those that have come."


The event saw a combination of different cultures and religions come together in remembrance of those that died in the Christchurch terror attack.

President of New Zealand's Ulama Advisory Board, Sheikh Mohammed Amir, said all religions have the same common goal of finding peace and living in peace.

"Every culture and religion works to find and live in a peaceful world," Amir said.

"We are a community of peace and love and for a community like that to be target for a terrorist we can't understand it."

He also said that the word "terrorist" has been used so much around the Muslim name that it had "poisoned" it.

"When people hear the word terrorist they think of Muslim and it has put into their heads to think like that and it needs to change.

"When someone commits a terrorist act it should be solely blamed on them and them alone. That person should be punished, not an entire group or society, just them."

But the overwhelming message was that although this terrible act did occur it has brought the good out of New Zealand.

"This person wanted to disunite the community, he wanted to tear us apart, but instead we have come together. New Zealand has come closer together," Amir said.

"God, Allah, made us all different for us all to learn from each other and meet each other and grow together."