self-deprecating and occasional tongue-in-cheek look at ourselves and
the world around us ......
Sunday, 27 December 2009
News you won't find on CNN!
Galore at Giveaway
by Janeth Deen
he end of the
year is finally upon us and to round it off the welfare
shop conducted a special one off event to celebrate the
return of the pilgrims from Haj and the Eidul Adha
To do this we decided to
donate all the toys given to the welfare shop during the
year as an act of charity to the children of Logan. It
just happened that by the time we organised the event it
was close to Christmas celebrations.
The local newspapers namely the Reporter and the Albert
and Logan news both gave us half a page coverage with
bold headings such as 'Free Toys this Christmas' and
'Faith in acts of generosity'.
The Albert and Logan news
commenced the first paragraph of its article by calling
us 'one of Logan's leading community organisations'.
This paragraph alone shows that the Queensland Muslim
Welfare Association has been recognised for the work it
has carried out in the eleven months of trading.
The Albert & Logan
The toy give away was held last Sunday,
20th of December in the Parkland Shopping Centre.
It was a very wet day, but fortunately we
took this into account in our planning and used one of
the empty shops in the centre for the give away.
A concert was held with six of the Deen
grandchildren performing for an audience of many ethnic
Max Radvan sang the national
anthem, Hannah and Jessica demonstrated
some of the acts that they had prepared for the Woodford
Folk Festival which they will represent for the Flip
The triplets Calean, Mia
and LarsForsingdal sang songs that told
the audience that we are the children of humanity.
We had ample toys to go around thanks to the generosity
of Iqbal and FazilaBhamjee of
Babyhood who donated a pallet of new baby toys.
Also, members of our committee spent four
weeks washing, mending and packaging for toys that had
been donated during the year. The people who were in the
audience were impressed with the quality of the goods we
There were not only toys, but boardgames,
books, backpacks, teenage clothes, rollerblades,
colourful pillows and many other items. Members of the
Muslim Charitable Foundation were on hand to help
control the crowd as were volunteers from the Muslim
The children of Logan and their parents were very
thankful for the acts of generosity shown by the Muslim
community of Brisbane and the Gold Coast.
The giveaway events help build up goodwill for the
welfare shop as well as informing the public that
Muslims play important roles in the Australian
community, many of which go unnoticed as the media
usually focuses on negative comments.
We hope everybody has a safe holiday period and we look
forward to seeing you all in 2010.
Roundup of 2010 Activities
The President of Muslims
Australia – AFIC, Mr Ikebal
Patel congratulated the end
of year achievements of
students at all of AFIC’s
five schools across
Mr Patel commended the
standard of excellence
attained by Year 12 students
at the Malek Fadh Islamic
School in Greenacre in
Sydney, the Islamic College
of Brisbane, and the Islamic
College of South Australia
in Adelaide . Students at
Langford Islamic College in
Perth and Canberra Islamic
School were also
acknowledged for their
successes in the National
assessment of Literacy and
Mr Patel stated:
‘Our students at all the
above schools have
demonstrated their hard work
and dedication and their
effort has been rewarded
with excellent results that
will lead to future
opportunities. Our students’
performance is a result of
concerted effort by AFIC
with the support of Federal
and State Governments,
parents, teachers, the
various school boards, and
the many volunteers who have
spent countless hours for
such a noble cause. We are
all elated by the
achievements of our
AFIC recently published a
report on its activities of 2009. You can download the
report by clicking
The Nikah ceremony of
Ahsan, son of Reffik
of Brisbane, and FaridaBibi, daughter of
Sikander and NazmaJeewa of Durban,
South Africa took place at
Musjid-Al-Hilal in Durban on
reception and walimha held
on Sunday 20 December at NMJ
Hall, Durban was attended by
over 800 guests.
couple are presently
honeymooning in Malaysia.
arrive in Australia, Farida
Bibi will begin the pleasant
task of making Australia her
new home while Ahsan gets
back to managing the family
Woodford Folk Festival gets underway today (Sunday)
and goes on for 6 days until 1 January. The festival is
held on a 500-acre environmental parkland located on the
Sunshine Coast Hinterland, on Jinibara Country, which is
just over 1 hour north of Brisbane.
Amongst an eclectic array of performances
and events there will be "concerts, dances, street
theatre, writers’ panels, film festival, comedy
sessions, acoustic jams, social dialogue and debate,
folk medicine, an entire children’s festival, an
environmental programme featuring talks, debates and
films, art and craft workshops, circus performances and
workshops, late night cabarets, parades and special
events including a spectacular fire event."
The festival attracts a diverse audience
with all ages and many nationalities attracted each
The Rhythm Hunters (pictured
left) will provide Sufi music from Sumatra combining
the power of Taiko drumming with indigenous music from
the Islamic provinces of West Sumatra and Aceh,
Indonesia. Devotional music is rich in Indonesia and
Aceh is considered a gateway to the myriad Islamic
influences throughout Indonesia.
Sufi Ghazals ("poems and songs of
intoxication and yearning that express the soul's
longing for union with the divine") and Nasheds
("beautiful songs of praise and love") will be performed
by Asim Gorashi, ImamMuhammad
Aslam and Dastan and Khalil Gudaz.
Kim Cunio and Heather Lee, Imam
Muhammad Aslam, and the Tashi Lhunpo Tibetan
Monks will recite sacred texts at the festival
showing how the significance and potency of sacred texts
is emphasized by the choice of the recited syllables and
sounds, giving weight to the message being given. The
focus is on ancient Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist texts
and their recitations in temples, mosques, synagogues
and public places. A singer of nasheeds in Arabic and
Kalame Soofi, Sufi music and poetry in Urdu, Imam Aslam
is an Imam at Algester Mosque in Brisbane.
A concert featuring traditional Iraqi and
Turkish music will be performed by musicians of
international renown. It includes Iraqi folk and
classical music and Turkish music of the Ottoman court.
You can download the full programme for
the 6 days and nights from
A Joyous Celebration
The Kuraby Madrasah held its
annual jalsah on 2
December at the Macgregor
Primary School. It was an
occasion for the school to
acknowledge the hard work of
its students over the course
of the year.
The students also put
including plays, songs and
Qur'an recitations for their
appreciative parents and
of a South African stalwart
by Mustafa Kemal Omar
It is with sadness that we announce the passing in South
Africa of Dr Shaheen Khotu, a dedicated servant
to the cause of rebuilding a new South Africa. Shaheen
was Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the Department of
National Health (South Africa).
Shaheen had suffered worsening medical complications as
a result of an indeterminate illness.
Unfortunately he did not recover despite the best
efforts of the medical services.
Dr Khotu, a medical doctor by qualification, was an
energetic, passionate stalwart of rebuilding a new South
His contribution and dream was to create a single health
patient record that was accessible all over South
His vision was to improve the information and
communication technologies (ICT) within the public
health sector in order to enhance service delivery
through the adoption of 21st century technology.
Elusive as it has been until his untimely death, Shaheen
pursued his dream and relinquished the personal gain
that could be had from practicing as a private medical
practitioner in South Africa.
Remaining dedicated to the cause of a better health
system for one and all, Dr Khotu persisted with this
vision to improve the South African Health system.
Shaheen studied medicine in Egypt and later practiced in
the public sector in South Africa.
He practiced privately for a brief period, but jumped at
the opportunity to improve service delivery within the
Department of Health. He is survived by his wife and 3
The thoughts and prayers of those in Brisbane who knew
him well go out to him and the family he leaves behind.
Muslims on a creator
Jew, Rabbi Raymond Apple,
and a Muslim, Sheik Hersi
Hilole, gave their views
on a creator to the Daily
Apple is emeritus rabbi of
the Great Synagogue, Sydney.
He is now based in Israel.
Hilole is an Islamic scholar
who came to Sydney as a
refugee and became a
spiritual leader of
Australian Somali Muslims.
Broadcaster Alan Jones and his Sydney
radio station employer 2GB have been ordered to pay
$10,000 in damages after a court ruled he vilified
Upholding a complaint of "racial vilification" against
Mr Jones and 2GB, the NSW Administrative Decisions
Tribunal on Tuesday said a number of Mr Jones' comments
were neither reasonable nor made in good faith.
The tribunal had heard that, presenting his regular
talk-back slot over the course of a number of days in
April 2005, Mr Jones said Lebanese youths hated
Australia and raped, pillaged and plundered the country,
undermining its culture.
Mr Jones also identified "car hoons" as Lebanese youths
and said they disrespected the police.
He also expressed the view that Australia was not a
multi-racial but a mono-cultural society and that this
monoculture was now under threat from "enemies within".
The tribunal's ruling said: "... Mr Jones' comments
about `Lebanese males in their vast numbers' hating
Australia and raping, pillaging, and plundering the
country, about `a national security' crisis and about
the undermining of Australian culture by `vermin' were
reckless hyperbole calculated to agitate and excite his
The tribunal also ruled that Mr Jones interpreted a
speech made by Lebanese-Australian cleric Sheik Faiz
Mohammed in Bankstown as an excuse for sexual assaults
by Muslim men on non-Muslim women.
Sydney-based Lebanese-born Muslim figure Keysar Trad,
complained to the tribunal.
He was later invited onto Mr Jones' program for an
exchange during which the presenter accused Mr Trad, as
a Muslim leader, of doing nothing to stop car hoons or
speeches such as the one said to have been made by Sheik
The tribunal awarded the damages and ordered the
presenter make a public apology, although its exact
nature was not determined.
"We find that the complaint of racial vilification as
against both respondents are substantiated," the ruling
Imam Imraan Husain has
returned safely back from
Hajj. Writing about his trip
Alhamdu lillah, we were invited to
Hajj by the Saudi Embassy on behalf of the King
Abdulla bin Abdulaziz Al Saud the Custodian of the
Two Holy Mosques. As I had anticipated it was a
short but not easy trip.
We entered the Kingdom of Saudi
Arabia three days before the Days of Hajj and
basically we were the last few to enter. The Haram
was already packed to capacity. We had to complete
our Umrah among multitudes of people which was a
We had the advantage that on
arrival we were treated extremely well and there
were no problems in terms of transfers, transport,
quality of accommodation and food. Our accommodation
was located in Aziziyya which is far from the Haram
Sharif and the traffic with all the hustle and
bustle makes a ten minute journey into an hour
We (Hussin Goss and myself) made
sure that we drank a large amount of Zam Zam water
during our stay. Large quantities of Zam Zam waters
were made available for all pilgrims in the Harams
of Makkah and Madina.
The five days of Hajj were
fantastic. One cannot express the true feeling you
get when you are in Arafat, Mina and Muzdalifah.
There was a strong feeling of love, respect and hope
for the Muslim Ummah.
hospitality and respect given to all Hujjaj
(pilgrims) was outstanding. We had the best of
everything Masha Allah. May Almighty Allah give
prosperity and success to all those who facilitated
in making Hajj easy for the Pilgrims.
spent two days at the Prophet’s Masjid in Madinatul
Munawwarah. It is the most tranquil and peaceful
place in the world. Fortunate are those who live
Alhamdulillah, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry has mobilized
all human and material services and facilities to
ensure the good health and safety of the Pilgrims to
enable them to perform Hajj rituals easily and
The improvement in terms of the great architectural
achievements, the expansion of the two Masjids, the
Jamarat Bridge Project, had a significant impact in
facilitating the smooth performance of hajj rituals.
Saudi health minister said the annual Muslim Hajj
pilgrimage ended without the major flu outbreak
feared by some experts; and there were only five
deaths from the H1N1 flu virus out of seventy-three
This year’s Hajj gave me the overwhelming feeling of
the spiritual experience, closeness to Allah, the
cleansing of sins, the sense of unity and equality
Hajj is a manifestation of mutual love and
respect for all human beings irrespective of
nationality, language or colour. We are all treated
thank Almighty Allah for giving me the opportunity
to fulfil this important pillar of Islam once again.
We hope that Hajj becomes affordable for everyone
who desires to perform it.
also would like to express our gratitude to the
officials at Canberra Saudi Embassy, Ustadh Abdul
Kareem and brother Sulaiman for making this trip
possible for us visiting the Baitullahil Haram.
During the absence of the Imam, Mr. Athar Shah took care of the visit of
St Kevin's, Benowa Primary school. A group of 65
students including 5 teachers visited the Mosque and
very positive feedback was received from the school.
A Gold Coast Mosque Jamaat of 15 brothers went for the
weekend in Khurooj to Holland Park Mosque and the
Ameer was Hj. Shibl Sarhan. The Jamaat plans to Lismore
in the south sometime towards the end of January.
Hifz classes are being during the holidays on an ad hoc
basis ddepending on the Imam's availability.
The Arabic classes for adults continue to run twice a
A few reverts are learning the basics of Islam at the
Mosque and plans are afoot to start a special class for
them in early 2010.
Three Islamic marriages were performed in the past 3
weeks by Imam Husain since his return from Hajj.
Marrying couples will receive a booklet compiled by the
Jami’atul Ulama of South Africa TVL. The booklet
contains important guidelines on marriage.
The Imam and two staff members of the Madrasah attended
a workshop program at Kuraby Madrasah with Imam Akram
with a view to improving and consolidating their
Mosque on the Prairie: Season 4 Episode 3
What's Yours is Mine
Summer Youth Weekend-Out
The Australian Muslim Youth Network, AMYN,
is organising an exciting Weekend-Out for boys and
adolescents aged 13 and over.
It will be a fun-packed weekend with
bush-walking, beach sports, BBQ, sleepover and much
AFTER Ruddbank, could we be getting the
The appointment of Ahmed Fahour (see profile
below), the former head of NAB's domestic business,
as chief executive of Australia Post will intrigue many
people, not least those prominent economists who this
year called for a new competitor to challenge the
dominance of the big four banks.
While Fahour is playing down the prospect, there is no
reason that Australia Post - with its 4433 outlets the
biggest such retail operation in the country - could not
be transformed into a mini-bank offering the day-to-day
services that people need.
The obvious model is KiwiBank, which was set up in 2002
as a division of New Zealand Post to take on the
dominance of the country's leading banks - which all are
owned by the big Australian banks.
Kiwibank has played the ''David and Goliath'' card in
equal measure to grab 600,000 customers by offering home
loans, credit cards, insurance and business
banking.There are obvious financial challenges facing
Australia Post if it were to do the same thing.
But there's little doubt that Fahour, the interim boss
of the Federal Government's ill-fated scheme to help the
crisis-hit commercial property sector, is the man who
could make it happen.
However, he would require the Government's full and
unfailing support to do so.
The people (bank customers) would like it but is Kevin
Rudd up for it?
In this and following issues
of CCN we highlight one of the successful Muslims in
Australia from the report and their thoughts about what
it means to be both a Muslim and an Australian.
Ahmed Fahour has
risen to the heights
finance and banking
both in Australia
He joined the
Bank in September
2004 as Executive
Director and Chief
In 2009 Mr Fahour
took up the role as
Executive Officer of
a joint venture
Government and the
Mr Fahour moved to
the Middle East to
head the Islamic
Gulf Finance House
and is now CEO of
Australia Post (see
story in this issue
over 200 years
Muslims have made a
to the multicultural
fabric of Australian
life, bringing with
them great diversity
have become doctors,
and lawyers; they
have built new
played sport at the
all, good Muslims
As Salaam o
This Sunday the 27/12/09, there will be a program to
commemorate Tenth of Muharram, Yaume Ashura, at
Esha Sallat Jamaat will be at 8.20pm followed by a
program with guest speaker Sheikh Ahmad Abu
Please bring along a plate to share.
Salaams Moulana Aslam
the Muslim World with CCN
Brotherhood conservatives win vote
(Reuters) – Egypt's main opposition group announced the
results of an election for its governing body and
analysts said most of the 16 members are conservatives,
signaling that it will reduce its role in mainstream
Mohamed Mahdi Akef, the
outgoing leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt's
largest opposition group is picture left.
The Muslim Brotherhood's new governing body excludes
several key members considered to be moderates, analysts
said. The group is banned in Egypt and its conservative
members believe its survival is more important than its
"The results of these elections signal the immediate
regression of political activity of the group in the
coming period," political analyst Diaa Rashwan told
The new governing body is likely to focus on social and
religious grassroots work and avoid open confrontation
with the state, Rashwan said.
President Hosni Mubarak's government has been squeezing
the Brotherhood out of mainstream politics and has made
it nearly impossible for the group to put up a candidate
to succeed him.
The Brotherhood won a fifth of the seats in parliament
in 2005 with members standing as independents.
Marked for life
Government appears to be
determined to press ahead
with the monitoring of all
Muslims, regardless of age,
under its flawed Prevent
Extremism programme. Anyone
working with children is
being asked to report
concerns of “radicalisation”
to the counter-terrorism
A leaked email this month
confirmed that a Security
and Partnerships Officer had
extended the witch-hunt by
visiting a nursery school!
It has also been revealed
that police involved in the
Prevent programme provide
monitoring advice not just
to teachers and youth
workers but to health,
social services, youth
offending and probation
services, mosques, prisons,
community centres, sports
clubs and women’s forums.
The aim of the fishing
expeditions is to search out
signs of radicalism and
those vulnerable to
radicalism. But it is hardly
an exact science, nor
objective. The definition
itself is arbitrary and
vague enough, allowing
subjective perceptions. The
grave danger is that it can
lead to large numbers of
Muslims being misidentified
as violent extremists.
The risk is even higher for
children, now as now Muslims
as young as four-year olds
are the target. Police are
looking for any sign of
deviant behaviour and young
children will be marked for
life as being subversive
long before they have any
understanding of the
The Muslim News
Sweden: Parents refused
right to name son Allah
In the latest battle over what people may legally
call their children, the Swedish Tax Authority (Skatteverket)
has ruled that the parents of a two-month-old boy in
Skåne in southern Sweden may not call their child Allah.
According to the decision, Skatteverket does not approve
“names that can give offence or be seen to cause
discomfort for the bearer”. In this case, Skatteverket
was “of the opinion that the name can be seen as
objectionable for religious reasons.”
Skatteverket legal expert Lars Tegenfeldt told The Local
that devout members of the public might take offense to
certain names with highly religious connotations.
“God or Allah or the Devil is offensive to the public.
Not me personally, but there are religious people who
think so,” he said.
“Some religious names though, like Jesus, are normal,”
There have been several high profile cases in Sweden
over the authority's seemingly arbitrary decisions
regarding first names it deems acceptable.
In 2007, for example, a couple was initially banned from
calling their daughter Metallica (a decision later
overturned), while authorities in another part of Sweden
allowed a baby boy to be called Google. Other
controversial names rejected by the agency have included
Q, Token and Michael Jackson.
The parents told The Local they do not plan to appeal
the Skatteverket's decision rejecting the name Allah.
ruling party says it plans to present a bill to
parliament next month, which would ban the wearing of
full Islamic veils in all public places. The party says
the move should be seen as "a law of liberation."
France's ruling party, the conservative Union Pour un
Mouvement Populaire (UMP), says it plans to present a
bill to parliament in January, which would ban full
Islamic veils in all public places. The bill is to be
presented in the first two weeks of next month, just
before the conclusions of a French parliamentary inquiry
on the burqa and niqab are published.
Jean-Francois Cope, the parliamentary party leader of
the UMP, said the measure was meant to defend France
"There are principles at stake: Extremists are putting
the republic to the test by promoting a practice that
they know is contrary to the basic principles of our
country," he said
Saudi Prince Alwaleed
ranks on top of Arab rich list
DHABI, (Xinhua): Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal bin
Abdulaziz Alsaud (pictured right) remains the
wealthiest Arab this year with a fortune of 18 billion
The 2009 Arabian Business Rich List showed that Prince
Alwaleed, chairman of Kingdom Holding Company (KHC),
tops the list for the sixth consecutive year.
He has managed to increase his wealth by nearly 1
billion U.S. dollars despite the global economic
downturn, the Arabian Business said.
It said that although the value of shares in KHC is
slightly less than the same period last year, an
increase of Prince Alwaleed's cash deposits and a rise
in value of some assets mean that his wealth has
The making of Noah’s Pudding is a common
practice among Muslims and Christians in the
Middle East. It is the symbol of sharing joy
– the joy of Noah’s landing, the joy of
Moses’ crossing the Red Sea, and God’s
bestowments to many other Prophets.
In Turkey, people cook Noah’s Pudding every
year and send a bowl of it to each of their
neighbours. Prophet Muhammad (peace and
blessings be upon him) said: “The Archangel
Gabriel counseled me so frequently regarding
the rights of neighbours that I was afraid
the neighbour would be declared an heir as
The story goes that during the Great Flood
the believers on Noah's Arc were facing
starvation. None of the remaining food
ingredients was sufficient to make a decent
meal, so Noah gathered all of them and mixed
them together to produce a delicious meal.
As a result, the believers survived the
famine, and the very next day, the flood
receded. Today, this meal that Noah prepared
is called "Noah's Pudding" or "Ashura."
Every year people cook Noah’s Pudding in
remembrance of Noah and God's mercy on him
and on the believers.
Thousands of years old recipe for Noah’s
Pudding - makes 30 servings for you and your
1 cup wheat
1 cup white beans
1 cup chickpeas
1 cup raisins
1 cup almonds
3/4 cup peanuts
12 dried apricots
5 1/2 cups sugar
Water (enough to cover)
Topping: walnuts, cinnamon
1. Soak wheat, white beans, chickpeas, and
almonds in water overnight.
2. Boil the above ingredients (step 1) and
remove their outer shells or skin.
3. Soak the raisins in boiling water until
4. Put the above ingredients (steps 1-3) in
a large pot and boil. Add peanuts and
almonds (peeled and cut in half) at this
5. Chop the apricot into small pieces and
add to the mixture along with sugar.
6. Boil for 10-15 minutes.
7. Enjoy your pudding!
* These are the ingredients we chose. Feel
free to experiment with other grains,
fruits, and nuts.
Do you have a recipe to
share with CCN readers? Send in your favourite recipe
and be our "guest chef" for the week.
Kareema's Keep Fit Column
Q:Dear Kareema, why does it seem
harder to lose and keep weight off now after the age of
A: Our metabolism slows down
as we age and we also tend to retain less muscle mass.
This means that we need to work a
little harder as we get older!
Your best bet is to start walking
(increase distance or pace if you already walk daily).
Lifting weights may also help.
Remember that exercise and a healthy diet is important
to maintain a good metabolism.
Make sure not to skip meals and keep
your exercise routine fun, simple and interesting!
ideas and the best feedback come from our community of
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It is the usual policy of
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