Masjid Project: Meeting for Critical Updates on Saturday

There are important recent developments that have occurred concerning the masjid project. A meeting is announced so that these can be shared in person, and your attendance is urgently requested so they can be discussed as a community.

The meeting is planned to be held tomorrow (9/21) at 10am in the gymnasium at GIAC (301 West Court Street, Ithaca). Please plan to arrive a few minutes early so we can begin promptly.

Thank you in advance for your participation, and please encourage fellow members of the Muslim community to attend this important meeting.

Moving Sale

Our Brother Omar Afzal, one of the original members of the Muslim community in Ithaca since 1973, and his wife Salma will be moving away from Ithaca to Florida on this coming Sunday. They are requesting our help in their preparations for a moving sale that they are scheduling for Saturday (9/22), and are asking if three or four people could assist them for two hours today (9/21) afternoon. They can also use help with the set up tomorrow (9/22) 8am, and later in the day for dealing with unsold items.

They will be selling many household items, furniture, and books for reasonable prices. Please encourage people to attend the sale. Their address is 1069 Ellis Hollow Road, it is located close to the East Hill Plaza.

Thank you for support for a family that helped to first establish organized activities for Muslims at Cornell and in Ithaca, and we offer them best wishes in their transition.

Feed My Starving Children: October 10 – 14

In just a few weeks the Feed My Starving Children mobile pack event will be held in Ithaca. Volunteers from all the different religious  congregations in Ithaca come together and make food packages for children that are shipped to many parts of the world where conditions have become difficult through natural or man-made disasters. The meals packed are halal.

This year we have reserved shifts for 10 workers on four of the days when the event is scheduled. Our next step is to assign volunteers for the places we have reserved. The shifts will be on Thursday, October 11 from 7-9pm; on Friday, October 12 from 8-10pm; on Saturday, October 13 from 7-9pm; and on Sunday October 14 from 4-6pm.

This year the packing will he hosted by the St. Catherine of Siena Church, where the sisters in our community recently had a table at their Peace Festival, and got to meet many people.

Children are welcome to work (with adult supervision as described below), many congregations see this as an opportunity to introduce their children to the values of service and charity, and nation wide over half of the volunteers are under 18 years of age. We will work together to prepare heat-sealed packages of food, alongside many other people, inshaa’Allah.

Please let us know if you (and your children, if they are old enough) can volunteer to pack on one or more of the shifts. We can sign you up for the shift(s) you choose on a first come basis. We will list the names of all volunteers for each shift and email addresses for the adults. (No email addresses will be listed for children, optional for adults.)  Please respond promptly if you want to participate.

Here are the guidelines for children who wish to participate, keep them in mind so that we have an adequate number of adults to supervise at each shift:

  • For safety reasons, children under the age of 5 are not allowed in our packing area (sorry, no excuses)
  • Grades K-21 student to 1 adult
  • Grades 3-6: 3 students to 1 adult
  • Grades 7-9: 4 students to 1 adult
  • Grades 10-12: 5 students to 1 adult

Thank you for your service for this good cause, and to help in representing local Muslims among the members of the other congregations we have been getting to know. I will plan to send out more information soon.

On one shift each worker packs about $50 worth of food, and together for all the 40 work slots our Muslim community will pack about $2,000 worth of food. If you are unable to come to work a shift you can still contribute toward the collective effort by donating to cover the cost of the food we will pack. We will set up a group so that our donations can be counted together as a community, a donation link will be shared soon, inshaa’Allah.

Muharram: In Light of Quran and Hadith

We announce the start of the Islamic new year, 1440 After Hijrah (AH)! According to the methodology followed by the Hilal Committee of Metropolitan Toronto & Vicinity (local moon sighting) and the methodology followed by the Fiqh Council of North America (calculations), the first day of Muharram was Tuesday, September 11. Therefore, the 10th of Muharram (Day of ‘Ashura) will be on Thursday, September 20. Please try to make an effort to fast on this day. Also, in order to not imitate people of other faiths who also fasted on ‘Ashura, the Prophet (SAW) has advised us to also fast a day before or after this day.

Read on for more details on the significance and rewards…

Read more

Day of Arafat

The day of Arafat (9th of Dhul Hijjah) will be on Monday (8/20). It is a very blessed day that should not be neglected.

1. Fasting on this day is an expiation for two years.

It was reported from Abu Qutaadah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was asked about fasting on the Day of Arafat. He said, “It expiates for the sins of the previous year and of the coming year.” (Muslim)

2.  It is the day on which the religion was perfected and Allah’s favor was completed.

On the authority of ‘Umar bin al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, that a Jewish man said to him: “O Commander of the Faithful! There is a verse in your Scripture, were it revealed to us Jews we would have taken it as a holiday.” ‘Umar asked, “Which verse?” The man said,

الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِينًا

This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed my favor unto you, and I am pleased to have Islam as your religion. (Quran 5:3)

‘Umar said, “I know the day and place this [verse] was revealed. It was revealed as the Messenger of Allah, peace upon him, was standing on the Mount of Arafa on the Day of Jumu’ah.” (al-Bukhari and Muslim)

3. It is a day by which Allah swore an oath.

وَشَاهِدٍ وَمَشْهُودٍ

And [by] the witness and what is witnessed (Quran 85:3)

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “The promised day is the Day of Resurrection, the witnessed day is the Day of ‘Arafat, and the witnessing day is Friday.” (al-Tirmidhi)

4. It is the day of forgiveness of sins and freedom from the Fire

‘Aa’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “There is no day on which Allah frees more people from the Fire than the Day of ‘Arafat. He comes close and expresses His pride to the angels, saying, ‘What do these people want?’” (Muslim)