As the world tries to comes to terms with New Zealand's darkest day, closer to home Illawarra residents are showing their support for the Muslim community.
Flowers and cards have been left at Gwynneville's Omar Mosque, tributes to the 49 lives lost and many others injured from terrorist attacks on two Christchurch mosques on Friday.
"It was very disturbing and we were shocked to know it happened in a peaceful country," Omar Mosque president Dr Munir Hussain said.
"New Zealand was regarded as the second most peaceful country in the world."
Dr Hussain said around 90 people gathered in the mosque late Friday for a special prayer vigil "for the souls of those who were murdered", including a Christian man named Paul.
"He's from Christchurch and he's been living here in the Illawarra," he said.
"He came over with three bunches of flowers and sweets, and we all welcomed him and hugged him, and thanked him for his considerable thought. It was beautiful."
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On Saturday, notes and flowers continued to be placed inside the gates, including a contribution by Wayne Ngatai and Paulie Tuala.
The New Zealand expatriates - part the Illawarriors Rugby Union team - felt compelled to pass on condolences on the way to a game in Bowral.
"We just wanted to share some love and show some support to those families who have died," Mr Ngatai said.
"To be honest, after we dropped the flowers off I felt a bit of a shiver down my spine and it made me and Paulie a bit emotional."
He said no matter what race someone is or the religion they follow "no-one deserves to go through that, no-one deserves to have their life taken like that".
The Omar Mosque is holding a candlelight vigil on Saturday night at 7:30pm.
Meantime, a public peace vigil for people of any - or no - faith will be held in Wollongong's Crown Street Mall on Monday from 5:30pm, organised by Illawarra People for Peace.
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