Salam Alaikum... Below is a brief report of last week's Fundraising Dinner at the IHW that was published in this week's Arab American News.
April 24, 2011
Islamic House of Wisdom Fundraising Dinner Demonstrates the Unity and Generosity of the Faithful Community.
Islamic House of Wisdom celebrated its semi-annual fundraising dinner last Sunday, a successful event that included His Eminence Ayatollah Imam Berri, religious leaders, Congressman John Conyers, interfaith representatives, directors of Islamic and cultural centers and a host of elected official dignitaries.
IHW Founding Chairman, Dr. Mohammad Ajjour addressed more than 400 people, who gathered in the Mahdi Hall of the Islamic House of Wisdom. Dr. Ajjour said that the IHW has a rich history of serving the community with its religious, cultural, educational and civic programs. He praised the cooperation amongst various organizations and called for a stronger unity to build a better future for the new generations.
The Spiritual leader of Islamic House of Wisdom and founding Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi was the keynote speaker. He reflected on the recent visit to Dearborn by Terry Jones, saying that if Jones were to be the only crazy person, he wouldn't deserve any attention. But unfortunately, there is a large number of people who share Jones' ignorance about Islam and the Muslim community.
Some have gone as far as saying the Constitution Should Not Protect Muslims, or the First Amendment is not for Muslims. "This is why we can't ignore him," Imam Elahi said. "If Jones would read even one page of the Quran he burned, he would have reconsidered his actions and words."
The Quran is spiritual medicine from the pharmacy of Heaven, which can cure all spiritual, intellectual and social problems if people are willing to submit to its message, Imam Elahi said. "The Quran promotes freedom of speech but it also emphasizes on speech to be beautiful, respectful, responsible, kind, clear, meaningful and honest".
They justified burning the Quran by saying that the book contains violent orders like stoning! As a matter of fact the Bible has 18 verses about stoning and the Quran has none, yet no Muslim ever burned the Bible!
Speaking about the concept of charity in the Quran, Imam Elahi reflected on the Quranic verses with five fundamental points:
1- Charity should be given with the intention of God's pleasure. الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّه
2- Charity is not limited to money but includes knowledge, experiences and other Godly gifts. وَمِمَّا رَزَقْنَاهُمْ يُنفِقُونَ
3- Give from what you like for yourself. لَنْ تَنَالُوا الْبِرَّ حَتَّىٰ تُنْفِقُوا مِمَّا تُحِبُّونَ
4- Giving is not limited to prosperity but also to sacrifices during hardship. الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ فِي السَّرَّاء وَالضَّرَّاء
5- Charity can be given privately, publicly and any time, but it should be free from bragging.
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ لاَ تُبْطِلُواْ صَدَقَاتِكُم بِالْمَنِّ وَالأذَى
Imam Elahi thanked the community for its generosity to support the educational and religious centers and urged participants to observe the legacy of the Quran and the Family of the Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) by following their teachings with compassion, confidence and consistency.
It was announced that based on the permission of Ayatollah-Alozma Sistani and Marhoom Ayatollah Alozma Sayyed Fadlollah, and also Ayatollah Sheikh Abdolatif Berri, the faithful can support the Islamic House of Wisdom through the Sahmol-imam of the Khums. This way the faithful observe their religious duty, while they can take advantage of tax deductible donation.
Also, it was announced for those who missed the dinner and would still like to show support, they may do so directly at IHW (22575 Ann Arbor Trail, Dearborn Heights, MI 48127) or online at www.IslamicHouseofWisdom.com