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Sunday, 30 September 2007

Ramadhaan 1428 A.H.

Newsletter 0151

This week's CCN is kindly sponsored by

MnM Packaging Australia

Miss this event............at your peril...........and then only if you're a male!



OCTOBER is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


Breast cancer has had a growing profile since the early 90’s.


It has become a hugely important issue because it affects so many of us – friends, family, colleagues.

Each one of us probably knows of someone who has been touched by this disease; whether that awareness has come about through friends and family being diagnosed or famous celebrities.



To commemorate National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Crescents of Brisbane will be hosting an all ladies-only Breast Cancer Awareness afternoon on Saturday, 20 October from 1:30-5pm at the Kuraby State Special School Hall, Winifred St., Kuraby.



Key speakers include:

• Carolyn Brown - BreastScreen QLD
• Leonie Young – a Breast Cancer Survivor from the Kim Walters Choices Support Program at The Wesley Hospital
• Therese Thorpe – National Training & Promotions Manager (Brastylist) from Triumph International

Crescents of Brisbane has planned an afternoon that is going to be informative, entertaining and full of fun! And certainly one not to be missed!


There will also be a special beauty treat for everyone who attends as well as giveaways, lucky draw prizes and refreshments.

Entry is free, but you must register ASAP as seating in the Hall is very limited and places are already starting to fill up fast and it will most certainly be a case of "first in best dressed".


You can register online, email theteam@crescentsofbrisbane.org or phone Saalihah on 3219 8274 or 0404 296 297 or Bilkish on 3219 7012 or 0423 297 300 who will also tell you all about our exciting competition.

The Kuraby Mosque Fundraisermeter





A Winger and a Prayer: Must see documentary


The man described as the greatest goal kicker in the history of Australian rugby league reveals the secrets to his success in Australian Story.

Hazem El Masri, Canterbury Bulldogs winger and one of Australia’s few Islamic sporting stars, speaks for the first time about the prayer he utters just before lining up a kick.

"It’s pretty much a connection between me and God, and asking God to hopefully make it easier for me," he says.

El Masri grew up in Tripoli during the Lebanese civil war before moving to Australia with his family at the age of 11.

Since rising to prominence on the sporting field, El Masri has become a reluctant role model for Lebanese youth in Sydney’s south western suburbs.

But he also found himself entangled in controversy when members of his team were accused of raping a young woman at Coffs Harbour. And again when a confrontation developed with police who he claimed were harassing him because of his race.

He says he is worried about what it will be like for his children to grow up in a place where many people perceive all Lebanese to be criminals and rapists and has not ruled out leaving his adopted country in the future.

Well-known for fiercely guarding his privacy, Hazem El Masri granted Australian Story rare access to his private life and the people closest to him.


Watch the program


What Ramadan means for a revert


Melanie Pilling of the Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin spoke to a recent revert to the Islamic faith about the challenges of abstaining from food, sex and even gossip, during the month of Ramadan.


The following are extracts from the article:


Fa'izah Batchelor and her husband Hamdy Ibrahim with their daughter Rahma and nephews Tarek Ibrahim (left) and Khalid Ibrahim

LIKE most women Fa'izah Batchelor likes to gossip with her girlfriends.

But for the next month she is going to have to bite her tongue. She won't be able to have sex or even fantasize about it.

And she will have to get through it on a near-empty stomach.

When the 28-year-old Muslim convert tells those outside her faith about the holy month of Ramadan they think it's crazy.

"They say `why do you do this to yourself?' " said the Coombabah mother of four-month-old Rahma.

"But I love Ramadan. When I was pregnant (and could eat) I actually missed it. I felt guilty because everyone around me was fasting.

"Ramadan is our favourite time of the year. You feel so good about yourself. It is great for cleansing your mind, body and spirit and patching up problems you have with people.

"It is a time for turning over a new leaf."


There's also an unexpected benefit of Ramadan, laughs Fa'izah.


"After Ramadan everyone gets pregnant," she said. "And it is not just because you're not allowed to have sex during Ramadan.


"It is because the fast cleans your body of all its toxins and makes women more fertile."


"After Ramadan everyone gets pregnant," she said. "And it is not just because you're not allowed to have sex during Ramadan.

"It is because the fast cleans your body of all its toxins and makes women more fertile."

Fa'izah converted to Islam in 2003, shortly before she met her husband Hamdy Ibrahim while on a trip to her native New Zealand. 


Personal tragedy brought Fa'izah to God, whom she later decided she knew best as Allah. 


It was a realisation that shocked even herself.


"I would never have thought of myself as someone who would convert to Islam," she said.


"Religion didn't play a huge role in my upbringing. I was raised by my grandparents, one an atheist. The other was more spiritual, off with the fairies.


"I smoked, I drank-not to excess, but I did enjoy the pub - and I didn't really feel one way or the other about God.


"I was teaching English in South Korea when I found out my mum had been diagnosed with cancer.


"It was when I returned to Australia, nursing her and taking care of her until the end, that I started changing.


"I was there when she died, and I believed in God.

"From there it was a journey trying to figure out where my faith fits. And it wasn't until I looked into Islam that I found my place."

"From there it was a journey trying to figure out where my faith fits.


And it wasn't until I looked into Islam that I found my place."

She didn't know much about  Ramadan before she converted and says her first attempt was  terrifying. 


"I was really scared about my  first Ramadan, I thought `I don't  know if I am going to be able to do this'," she said. 


"I thought at the time it was such a big sacrifice. 


"But if you think about it, people often go without food without even realising, for a lot of different reasons. They might not have time to eat and then suddenly it's time for dinner and they realise they haven't eaten all day. 


"It is only when you are forced to go without food that it becomes hard."  Despite her fear, she got through her first Ramadan unscathed. 


"Once I got into it, it was easy because I was already on this high of being new to Islam.


"You're not allowed to talk bad about people, you're not allowed to swear ... you have to watch what you look at....


You have to be careful of what your eyes are seeing. If you don't, you make your fast worthless."

"I was walking around in a daze looking at everything differently.


I was like 'wow, look at those trees, look at how blue to sky  is ... it  was a bit like being a hippie," she laughed. 


Fa'izah describes it (Ramadan) simply, like Christmas.


She says Ramadan brings family and friends together for celebrations and feasts.


"It is better than Christmas because at the end of Ramadan the celebration lasts three days,"  she laughed. 


"I think a lot of people  think it is just about sacrificing food and  water. But it is more than that. 


"You're not allowed to talk bad  about people, you're not  allowed to  swear ... you have to watch what  you look at, you know, if you turn on  the TV and there are people having  sex, that's  not allowed. You have to  be careful of what your eyes are seeing. If you don't, you make your fast worthless."


To top off what was already a huge life-changing experience, Fa'izah also met Hamdy during her first Ramadan.


She fell in love with him immediately. They were married in 2004.


"It was a very significant time in my life. I was going through this huge change," says Fa'izah.


"It was my first Ramadan, I was moving back home (to Australia) and I had met my husband. It was a very spiritual time."


Source: Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin Saturday 15/9/2007

The CCN Book Club


Mohamed Khadra is a former professor of surgery who has had a successful and varied career as a leader in education and medicine, internationally and in Australia. He has a degree in medicine, a PhD and a fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. His memoir is called Making the cut: A surgeon's stories of life on the edge.

Mohamed says there is nothing like being a surgeon. "It's fantastic being a surgeon. The incredible ability to be able to, as we say, heal with steel, of being able to take a knife, plunge it into someone, hold their heart in your hand. To be able to heal them, get immediate results. It's hugely adrenaline-invoking."

"I wrote the book because I wanted people to be able to stand beside me, look through my eyes at the medical profession and at the people who are ill or facing death," he says.

"Having the name Mohamed Khadra in 2007 is a tough ask. There's an assumption of incompetence,"

Khadra's career has a sort of inevitability about it, but it was anything but guaranteed. As a working-class Lebanese youth from a Muslim family he keenly felt his outsider status, but he made it work for him.

"It's a spur," he says."I was not going to accept that as a reason for not succeeding. I just felt I had to work harder if I wanted to compete with the private school, golden-haired boys. If I wanted a job, I had to be better than everyone else."

Khadra received his medical degree from Newcastle University then trained as a surgeon. In his spare time he completed a postgraduate degree in computing and received a Master of Education.

But despite his success, Khadra is still aware of being different: "Having the name Mohamed Khadra in 2007 is a tough ask. There's an assumption of incompetence," he says. "I almost feel I have to prove my competence every time I shake hands with someone. But I also have preconceptions when I meet people; why should I expect different from anyone else?'


Mohamed Khadra in conversation with Richard Fidler ABC Radio 612
RealMedia 28k+ WinMedia 28k+







IWAQ Hamper Program


The Islamic Women's Association of Queensland's Ramadan Hamper Program has been well received by members of the community and many contributions have come in to support this initiative.


Hampers were prepared and distributed to those in the community with greatest need. The hampers go to newly arrived refugees and humanitarian entrants and clients who are living by themselves and have very limited income.


The hamper consists of non-perishable goods e.g. flour, sugar, oil, rice, dates etc.


If you wish to support this program you can purchase these items and drop them off at the IWAQ offices at 363 Gowan Rd, Sunnybank Hills. You can also call Muna on 3272 6355 or 0410 533 203 or email her at  muna.i@iwaq.org.au for more information.


IWAQ is distributing the hampers on a weekly basis on Fridays throughout Ramadan.


"IWAQ would like to thank all those who contributed items and pray that Allah reward you and bless you in your provision.", Muna Ibrahim told CCN.


Also, IWAQ will be starting a homework club for children from a refugee background. 


If anyone can volunteer 2 or 3 hours of their time to teach these children who are in need, contact IWAQ on 3272 6355 or 3272 6422.


The CCN Centre Link


In Semester 1, 2008, the LORD MAYOR’S MULTICULTURAL ROUNDTABLE will be offering two scholarships to provide financial support to applicants in completing a Diploma of Business: specialisation Entrepreneurship at Southbank Institute of Technology, Kangaroo Point Campus.

The program includes 18 weeks study (3 hours 2 nights per week and 5 Saturday workshops). The scholarships will also provide membership access to the Enterprise Centre at Southbank Institute of Technology for 6 months from Semester 2, 2008. Download details.

Twelve scholarships will be also be available to provide financial support to recipients in completing a Certificate IV in Small Business Management at Sarina Russo Job Access, City Campus followed by a 12 month business mentorship program in 2008. Download details.

Access Services Inc is offering a course in “Certificate III in Community Services”. It is a 10 week course between the hours of 9am-2.30pm. The course starts on 8th October.

Speak to Sushil (Muslim Employment Worker) on 38089299 if you are interested.


South African Cricket Team Cops a Beating


After a slightly less than impressive performance at the recent Twenty 20 the South Africans asked some very serious questions of themselves:



Q. What do Mark Boucher and Michael Jackson have in common?
A. They both wear gloves for no apparent reason.

Q. What's the difference between Graeme Smith and George Bush?
A. George Bush has more victories.

Q. What is South Africa's best chance of a win at Kingsmead?
A. Telling the other team the match is at the Wanderers.

Q. How bad is the South African batting?
A. Well, the selectors are thinking of moving Extras up the batting order.

Q. What is the height of optimism?
A. A South African batsman putting on sunscreen.

Q. What is the main function of the South African coach?
A. To transport the team from the hotel to the ground.

Q. What's the South African version of a hat-trick?
A. Three runs in three balls.

Q. Why don't South African fielders need pre-tour travel injections?
A. Because they never catch anything.

Q. What do you call a South African with 50 runs against his name?
A. A bowler.

Q. What's the most proficient form of footwork displayed by Graeme Smith?
A. His walk back to the pavilion.

Q. Who has the easiest job in the South African touring party?
A. The guy who removes the ball marks from the bats.

Q. What does Graeme Smith and a drug addict have in common??
A. Both spend most of their time wondering where their next score will
    come from.

Q. Who spent the most time on the crease of anyone in the South African
    touring party?
A. The lady who ironed the cricket uniforms.

Q. Why is Graeme Smith cleverer than Houdini?
A. Because he can get out without even trying.


Three Shy Girls




Photo taken at a mosque in Agra, India by Jeroen van Geel


Sabdia sets out ICQ strategy


At the AGM of the Islamic Council of Queensland (ICQ) held last week at Rochedale Mosque the President of ICQ, Mr. Suliman Sabdia, delivered his annual report detailing his 250 days in office.


Mr. Sabdia pointed out in his introduction that the Islamic Council of Queensland has been in existence for some 43 years. After all this time, the present committee "inherited an organization with no income, no assets and no funds, no relevance in the day to day lives of the Muslims of this State and no recognition by Government, or non government organizations as the peak umbrella body of the Muslims in the State of Queensland".


He said that he had appealed to the member societies of ICQ, other Muslim business and Professional organizations, as well as Muslim individuals to join, support and strengthen ICQ. 


The ICQ has agreed in principle to rent a residential premises near the Holland Park Mosque to establish its offices and secretariat. The Islamic Society of Holland Park are the owners of the premises.


The President's full report.


Ramadan goodwill messages - continued


The AMARAH Inc (Australian Muslim Advocates for the Rights of All Humanity) Team would like to wish everyone a most beautiful Ramadhan.  May it be a month of contemplation, remembrance, love, unity, compassion, and generosity. May it also be a month of striving to actively contribute to all of humanity.


As Tariq Ramadan challenges: "What kind of models of profound, intelligent and active spirituality do we offer today to the people around us? What have we done with our universal message of justice and peace? What have we done with our message of individual responsibility, of human brotherhood and love? All these questions are in our hearts and minds.. and there is only one response inspired by the Qur'an and nurtured by the month of Ramadhan: God will change nothing for the good if you change nothing."


May your fasting be accepted and blessed. May your efforts for a better humanity be abundantly rewarded. And May Allah the Most High Grace you with His Light, Love and Protection in this Holy Month and always.  Ameen


Nora Amath

Managing Director, AMARAH Inc


Ladies Ifthaar Report


IFA Youth together with Al-Nisa, hosted their third consecutive Ifthaar last night, Saturday the 29th September at Kuraby Community Hall.


More than sixty ladies attended with representatives from the Somali, Arab, Fijian and Southern African communities.


IFA spoke of the virtues of Ramadan in light of the Quraan and Sunnah as a reminder of the relevance of this auspicious month.


The night was an enjoyable one, with appetizing food and vibrant company.

We would like to thank all those who attended, and look forward to seeing you all again next year Insha-Allah.

IFA Youth would also like to thank Alnisa for a successful evening, and may our work together continue into the future Insha-Allah.

Naadirah Chenia - Events Co-ordinator

IFA Youth


Ifthaar at Algester





Over 650 men, women and children turned up at Algester Mosque last night (Saturday, 29 September) for the breaking of fast dinner sponsored by Moulana Nawaz, Yahyah Hasham, Yunie Omar, Yunus Paruk, Mohammed Hanief Yusuf, Omar Khan, Din Mohammed and Dado Sacur and their families.



The traditional akhni went down a treat as did the chance to catch up with old friends and meet up with new ones.



The sponsors are to be commended for their generosity and for a well-organized and well-catered event.





Interfaith Eid Dinner: Open Invitation


Ramadhan Kareem.

AMARAH Inc (Australian Muslim Advocates for the Rights of All Humanity), Brisbane City Council, and a few city Church groups have extended an open invitation to the Muslim Community to attend an interfaith dinner celebrating diversity and the wonderful occasion of Eid.

"This is a great chance to come together, reflect on our pluralism, our diversity, our connection to Prophet Abraham (may peace be upon him). But most of it is a chance to engage in meaningful dialogue with our neighbours.", said AMARAH MD Nora Amath.

"As Muslims, we sometimes whinge about how ignorant the majority of Australians are about Islam because they only get their information from the media or from sensationalist books. But unfortunately the majority of us aren't countering that ignorance. The truth of the matter is that the majority of non-Muslims don't get a chance to meet Muslims; hence we need to create opportunities like these so that people can begin talking, learning, and perhaps connecting."

You can join the party on Friday 19th October at 6pm, West End Uniting Church, Sussex Street/Vulture Street to celebrate with your neighbours the joyous time of Eid and to reflect on the Blessed Month of Ramadhan. Magrib Prayer facilities will be made available; in fact it is part of the program.

"The sumptious dinner (catering done by a local Muslim sister) is free, however as places are very limited, please RSVP through me to book your seat.", was the advice from AMARAH.

Click on the image for further details.


Unity Cup on YouTube




Kareema's Keep Fit Column



Q: Kareema, how can I get the best out of my workout now during Ramadan as I don't have much energy but still do what I can?




A: That's your battle half won!!


Great to see that you are still working out as keeping fit is all about being consistent.


To maximise your workout, alternate your periods of intense exercise (working phase) with light exercise (recovery phase), you'll burn  more calories this way than you would with continuous moderate exercise - even if your workout is shorter than normal!!




Need an answer to a fitness related matter? Send your question to Kareema at  fitness@crescentsofbrisbane.org.

All questions sent in are published here anonymously and without any references to the author of the question.


The Culinary Corner




Baba ghannouj is a popular dip made from eggplant and tahini. It has a smooth, creamy texture, and a slightly smoked taste. It is traditionally served with pita bread (toasted or fresh), however many people like it as a chip dip with potato chips or tortilla chips.







1 large eggplant
1 clove garlic
1/4 - 1/2 cup lemon juice (depending on taste)
3 tablespoons tahini
1 teaspoon salt
3 tespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoon olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake eggplant for 30 minutes, or until outside is crisp and inside is soft.

Allow to cool for 20 minutes.

Cut open eggplant and scoop out the flesh into colander and allow to drain for 10 minutes.

Removing the excess liquid helps to eliminate a bitter flavor.

Place eggplant flesh in a medium bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mash together. You can also use a food processor instead of by hand. Pulse for about 2 minutes.

Place in serving bowl and top with lemon juice and olive oil. Add other garnishments according to taste.

Serve with warm or toasted pita or flatbread. Enjoy!

Garnishment Ideas for Baba Ghannouj
Baba ghannouj always has to have olive oil on top for garnishment. However you can spice things up a bit by adding crushed red pepper, a dash of cumin, parsley or coriander.


Source: http://mideastfood.about.com/od/dipsandsauces/r/babaghannouj.htm


Do you have a recipe to share with CCN readers?
Send in your favourite recipe to theteam@crescentsofbrisbane.org and who knows, you could be our "guest chef" for a future edition of CCN.


The CCN Chuckle



Mula Nasruddin, a shepherd, was looking after his sheep at the side of a deserted road.


Suddenly a brand new Porsche screeches to a halt. The driver, a man dressed in an Armani suit, Cerutti shoes, Ray-Ban sunglasses, TAG-Heuer wristwatch and a Pierre Cardin tie, gets out and asks Mula Nasruddin, If I can tell you how many sheep you have, will you give me one of them?

Mula Nasruddin looks at the young man, then looks at the large flock of grazing sheep and replies, Okay.

The young man parks the car, connects his laptop to the mobile fax, enters a NASA website, scans the ground using his GPS, opens a database and 60 Excel spreadsheets filled with algorithms and pivot tables. He then prints out a 150-page report on his high-tech mini-printer, turns to the shepherd and says, You have exactly 1,586 sheep.

Nasruddin answers, That's correct, you can have your sheep.


The young man takes an animal and puts it in the back of his Porsche.


Mula Nasruddin looks at him and asks, If I guess your profession, will you return my animal to me?


The young man answers, Yes! Go on then.

Mula Nasruddin says, You are an auditor.


That was quick...How did you know? asks the young man.


Very simple, answers the Mula Nasruddin.


Firstly, you came here without being wanted. Secondly, you charged me to tell me something I already knew, and thirdly, you don't understand anything about my business.

Now can I have my dog back? "

.....and now a word from this week's sponsor........... MnM Packaging Australia



Contact Yahya on 0403 338 040 or Abdul on 0412 268 665


What's happening in our neck of the woods......


Click on image to enlarge



Crescents' Health


Breast Cancer Awareness

register online

MBN Eid Dinner QMT Unity Cup (Futsal) Eidfest2007

Ramadan Programme

at the Darul Uloom

Interfaith Eid Dinner IWAQ Fun Night Out          

The CCN Date Claimer





(Click on link)





14 September


Start of Ramadan

2 October


Using Power Tools—Become a handy woman

Logan Women's Health and Wellbeing Centre

25 Ewing Road, Woodridge

0405 448 045


12 or 13 October

Friday or Saturday

End of Ramadan

13 or 14 October

Saturday or Sunday


14 October


Queensland Multicultural Festival

Multicultural Affairs Queensland

Roma Street Parkland

3872 0756(ext:21756)

All day

19 October


Interfaith Eid Dinner

AMARAH, BCC & Church Groups

West End Uniting Church
Sussex Street West End

0422 349 786


20 October


Womens' Health Workshop: Breast Cancer Awareness

Crescents of Brisbane

Kuraby State Special School Hall


1.30pm - 5pm

20 October


Gala Family Eid Dinner


RNA Showgrounds

0402 032 506


21 October


QMT Unity Cup (Futsal)


Acacia Ridge Futsal Centre, 1391 Beaudesert Rd.

0412 786 168

All day

27 October


Qld Eidfest 2007

Qld Eidfest

Mt Gravatt Showgrounds


10am to 10pm

10 November


Annual Fun Night for Women


Islamic Women's Association of Queensland

Clairvaux MacKillop College Hall, Klumpp Rd, Upper Mt. Gravatt

3272 6355

6pm til late

19/20 November

Monday & Tuesday

Queensland Multicultural Summit ‘07



State Library of Queensland

3844 9166

All day

23 November


Kuraby Special School Bike Track Fund Raiser Dinner


Crescents of Brisbane, Kuraby Lions & Chinese Lions


0402 026 786


20/21 December


Thursday or Friday


To claim your date for your event email theteam@crescentsofbrisbane.org.


Write For Us

The best ideas and the best feedback come from our community of readers. If you have a topic or opinion that you want to write about or want seen covered or any news item that you think might be of benefit to the Crescents Community please e-mail



Share your thoughts, feelings and ambitions for our community through CCN.


If there is someone you know who would like to subscribe to CCN please encourage them to send an e-mail to theteam@crescentsofbrisbane.org with the words “Subscribe Me” in the subject line.


Articles and opinions appearing in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Crescents of Brisbane team, CCN, its Editor or its Sponsors, particularly if they eventually turn out to be libelous, unfounded, objectionable, obnoxious, offensive, slanderous and/or downright distasteful.


It is the usual policy of CCN to include from time to time, notices of events that some readers may find interesting or relevant. Such notices are often posted as received. Including such messages or providing the details of such events does not necessarily imply endorsement of the contents of these events by either CCN or Crescents of Brisbane