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The Muslim Link
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Community News
Blessings of Ramadan Show As ISG Finally Breaks Ground PDF Print E-mail
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Community News - Community News
Written by Wafa Jawad, Muslim Link Staff Reporter   
Tuesday, 13 August 2013 11:33

After years of planning and meetings with the county, ISG (Islamic Society of Germantown) held its Groundbreaking ceremony on July 27, 2013 at the site of their new masjid building on Blunt Road behind the Fox Chapel shopping center in Germantown.

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Smaller Team DC Takes Second Place at MIST Nationals PDF Print E-mail
Community News - Community News
Written by Wafa Jawad, Muslim Link Staff Reporter   
Tuesday, 13 August 2013 10:15

Maryland, DC and Virginia students faced off against some of the brightest youth of the nation at MIST (Muslim Interscholastic Tournament) Nationals held this year in Detroit the first weekend of July.

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Young Manassas Imam Is All About Youth PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Hena Zuberi, Muslim Link Staff Reporter   
Tuesday, 13 August 2013 10:09
The Muslim Link interviews Mufti Asif Iqbal, the imam of Manassas Muslim Association. In his thirties, Imam Iqbal has been the imam of MMA since 2004.

TML: Where did you study?

I did my hifdh (memorization of Quran) in New Orleans, they used to have a madrassah there. Then I went to Dar ul Uloom Madani in Buffalo, New York to get my ‘alim degree. From there I went to Hyderabad, India to Al Mahad Ul Aliyah al Islami to do my ifta course. In 2004 I started my tenure here at MMA. I grew up in Baltimore, MD but I was hardly home as I was away at school. I commuted from Baltimore for a few years as my father was in a coma. He passed away in Dec 2005 and then I moved here to Manassas. I have led salah at Islamic Society of Baltimore, they know me quite well.

TML: Tell us about your family.

I am married with two boys. My older one is 6 years old, Saad Iqbal. He is memorizing the Quran from the Quran Program in Springfield, VA. He has memorized 7 juz already. He is in 3rd grade, my wife homeschools him. My younger one is starting kindergarten. My wife, Azizah, is also an ‘alimah. She graduated from Dar al Uloom Madaniyah and teaches classes for women and children. 16-17 students come everyday after school to learn from her from the local community. On the weekend we have alim classes for adults, Arabic grammar classes and a Friday Halaqah that my wife and I conduct together. We also do programs for men and women over different issues ie. virtues of zakah, preparing for Ramadan etc. There is a lot more that we have planned but we hold back due to a lack of space.

One of my brothers is an imam in Louisville, KY, and my other brother is a teacher in the institute in Buffalo, NY.

TML: What are your plans for youth?

We cannot call the youth and tell them that come here and listen to a lecture. As long as they are praying and coming to masjid. I have seen all the youngster in my brother’s community come hang out at the masjid. They play volleyball, basketball, even cricket. I just get the youth come in, sit down, go out and eat. While you are interacting with them then you teach them. There is no specific place for them to come right now. InshaAllah with the new facility they will have a space for themselves.

TML: What is your leadership style?

We are all evolving into lthe kind of eaders that the community needs. Without the crossing the bounds of shariah, we try to make it easy for people. I try to keep that in mind. When I am in the masjid I keep the limits in mind while addressing the congregation. I say lets get them involved and then educate them. We are all growing.

Alhamdulillah when you have a traditional scholar a lot of time there is a lot of friction with the management and the board, but Alhamdulillah, I have no problems and I thank Allah for this. Anything that is a management decision, I leave it up to them and anything that is comes to shariah or religious issue then they defer to me. It goes hand and hand. Any religious matter that needs addressing goes through me, even if it is urgent, they say no we have to consult the imam. 

We have had some new converts but our mussallas capacity is literally 30 people and we have not advertised it yet.
 
Break-In Hampers Muslim Youth Program In SE DC PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Hena Zuberi, Muslim Link Staff Reporter   
Tuesday, 13 August 2013 10:05
"Them Muslims changed my kid. I am not Muslim but Allah sent them. 3 men into my house. So powerful they were, I could see his shoulders dropping. He was out of control. At 13, taking to drugs, no school wanted him, no program would accept him. Now he is going to go to National Collegian Prep School,” exclaimed Ms. Mooney.

"I am devastated, thieves broke into their office and stole the computers, laptops and the Wii. This was his safe place to go. They accepted him in their football program, the Benning Terrace Soldiers."


A break-in at the office of the Benning Terrace Youth Empowerment Initiative leaves coaches, staff and kids upset.  Michael Toland is the President, serves as a coach and mentors at-risk youths in the Benning Terrace public housing development in Washington, D.C.

Thieves took the cameras, the DVD player, audio-visual equipment, a couple of laptops, and a Wii game system.

“This is where we hold our anger management, teen issues, and Islamic studies sessions,” says Toland. This theft is especially damaging as grassroots programs such as the Benning Terrace Soldiers in Washington, D.C., have helped youth growing up in extremely challenging environments but these programs often lack the funding to meet their community’s overwhelming needs.

The community football program started in 1999 and serves youth ages 5 to 15.  Benning Terrace Soldiers, as the team in known, has helped thousands of youth. Each season upto five teams play and each team has 25-30 kids.

The last break-in was in 2010 when the office was vandalized and team uniforms were destroyed. ”We use the DVD player for videos for our all our classes, the cameras are used during games. “We take pictures of the kids playing games, receiving trophies,” decried Toland.

The facility holds group counseling sessions for the children within the community discussing different topics, such as anger management, life skills, bullying and peer pressure.

The police have registered a report but the staff haven't heard back.

"I trust them, as long as they are there I know my son is safe, doing positive things. The gangs have taken over our streets, they want to take away our kids,” shares Ms. Mooney.

“We work with the local elementary school; we attend the school PTA conferences instead of the parents as a lot of these youth have no male figures in the house,” said Toland.

Toland is attends Masjid Al Islam in Ward 7. “They have made small cash donations to our program.”

The group has had several success stories. “We had a young child when we started, he is  becoming a DC firefighter and assists the children who come into our program,” shared Coach Toland.

Just a few days ago two different parts of the neighborhood got into a turf war and Imam Aliyy calmed them down.

Br. Jamal teaches the children financial management. They buy cases of water and sell water for a dollar a bottle as a summer job. “We will teach them marketing skills and plan to get each of them a bank account’” said Aliyy.

Another mentor, Br. Abdul Malik teaches Conscious Chess Moves – each Wednesday so neighborhood kids can have a positive outlet. ”Some of his kids have competed in national levels and have won,” said Abdul-Aliyy.

Imam Abdul-Aliyy is on the staff at Masjid al Islam, he runs the Islamic Studies program on Mondays and Fridays from 5-7pm  Ten to fifteen students attend his classes. “We cover iman, salah, adab conduct & behavior, Quran recitation,” relayed Abdul-Aliyy,”one of our appeals is for Qurans and books of hadith, history books, Quranic tafseer.” 

“We would like to have volunteers to come and assist us especially for the girls as right now we only have male mentors,” he said.

The Soldiers will be hosting a tree-planting on October 12th from 9 am to 4 pm around the community.

Visit http://btcei.com for more details on how you can get involved or to donate to this effort.

641 46th street South East Apt B1. 20019
 
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