A passionate essay about the Sheung Shui Masjid
By Muhammed Adnan
A dear brother earlier asked me what will happen to my donation if the Sheung Shui Masjid is not built. Thankfully, there are many people asking similar questions and we welcome each and every one with open arms. This is however, an important question and instead of going on a marathon exchange of WhatsApp messaging, I penned the following:
Walaikumasalam brother. Jazakallah khayr for the question. Please take the time to read through my words in full. You can post my answers here and elsewhere. It could prove helpful for others.
I am confident in this project because of the current progress. In approximately one month with about 400 supporters, the Sheung Shui Masjid project has now raised over a MILLION Hong Kong Dollars. Much of this was within a total of 12 hours.
This speaks quite loudly as to the will and power of the Muslim Community of Hong Kong. I believe the full sum can be funded entirely by the local community if everyone could be made aware of this project. Having said this, we are looking at overseas donors as well although there is no reason why Hong Kong’s over 300,000+ Muslims can’t kickstart this ourselves inshAllah.
Who is he that will lend to Allah a goodly loan, then Allah will increase it manifold and he will have a good reward?’[Al-Hadid 57:11]
In fact, if each of us gave just HK$1 a day for a year, we could raise over HK$100 million. I mention this only to highlight my belief that in unity we won’t just be able to able to manage this project but Insha’Allah many more. When the Muslim Ummah stands together, we stand tall.
Today, the biggest challenge for both this project and our Ummah is the lack of knowledge and Waswasa (Shaitan’s planting a seed of doubt in our ears and heart). However, as word spreads, most Hong Kong Muslims are coming forward to learn about this project with some understandably hesitant to commit.
“(Iblis (Satan)) said: ‘By Your Might, then I will surely mislead them all. Except Your chosen slaves amongst them (i.e. faithful, obedient, true believers of Islamic Monotheism).’”[Surah Saad: 82-83]
There are understandable doubts because the group responsible of TST, Wanchai, Stanley, Chaiwan, Shelly Masjids are not in-charge and UMAH is not as well-known despite operating an Islamic Elderly Home attached to a Madrassah in Tuen Mun for over 20 years. However, the main point is, a large movement of local Madrasahs was formed in Hong Kong over 20 years ago when the former Imam of the Kowloon Masjid left and formed his own group, which in turned led to the opening and flourishing of over 30 Madrasahs across Hong Kong today. If everyone had doubted the original movement, we would not have the unique diversity of Madrasahs in Hong Kong the way it is today. All praise is for Allah alone for his plans we often doubt.
This land was originally purchased by the United Muslim Association of Hong Kong (UMAH) under leadership of the deceased chairman, Mr. Alli Mohammed Din. In early 2017, the sitting UMAH Council agreed to form a Masjid Committee to transparently lead the development of the Masjid Project. This Committee is comprised of representatives from the Islamic Union of Hong Kong (IUHK), Hong Kong Islamic Culture and Welfare Association (HKICWS), Hong Kong Muslim Women’s Association (HKMWA), Islamic Cultural Association (ICA), Bangladesh Association of Hong Kong (BAHK), Indian Muslim Association Jamaat (IMA), United Welfare Union and students from CityU, HKUST, EdUHK (myself). There are also well-known community leaders and professionals as part of this Committee. You can access a full list on our website at http://umah.hk/committee/.
This Committee decided to have a public fundraising campaign to raise awareness and funds alike for the Masjid. We have tried to keep Muslim NGOs in the loop, including HKMUSA, SIT, MCHK, BOT, CMCFA, and many other acronyms.
When a petition signing was organised in January 2017, we received over 2,000 signatures in a week from all over Hong Kong. When a Jumuah was held at the Masjid site on 30th March, over 300 people attended and raised over HK$ 220,000, all within 3 hours. When a Fundraising dinner and Islamic Arts Auction was organised on 11th May, over half a million was raised within just over an hour. A brother who prefers to remain anonymous, has since handed over an entire signed HSBC cheque book containing 30 cheques, donating HK$ 2,500 for every single blessed day of this Ramadan. Allahu Akbar!
Those who spend their wealth (in Allah’s cause) … in secret and in public, they shall have their reward with their Lord…[Al-Baqarah 2:274]
Therefore, I can never tire to say: help and guidance comes from Allah alone.
To date, I am able to bear witness, not a single donated cent has been spent from the amount raised since I joined this project. In fact, as a Hong Kong government registered charity, we have to abide by all the relevant by-laws including undergoing a regular audit producing a third party audited annual financial report, accessible to everyone. All you have to do is ask.
Meanwhile, the operating costs of the full campaign including the wide range of expenses such as papers, banners, brooms, trucks, food, beverages, brochures i.e., everything is paid for out-of-pocket privately by our Committee members and a few private donors who share our deep passion to see this project through by means of their money, time and effort. May Allah reward them manifolds.
As soon the the target sum is reached, the Masjid Committee, in transparent consensus with everyone on board, will make all the relevant decisions and approve any expenditure from the Masjid account.
When a person dies, then his good deeds stop except for three: a Sadaqah Jariyah, a beneficial knowledge, or a righteous child who prays for that person.[Sahih Muslim]
As for the unlikely outcome this Masjid fails to meet the sum goal, this Committee will convene and make the decision. As this amount is raised for a Masjid in Hong Kong, that is what it will be used for. The process will be transparent, and the decision will be announced loud and clear, Insha’Allah. We will also try to hold a public consultation session to gather opinions.
Meantime, we need your du’a, advice and support. Your skills, knowledge and experience are also warmly welcomed, and will no doubt benefit the Muslim Ummah.
In the end however, the easiest way to respond to doubt is to ask: Is the price of NOT building a Masjid worth it?
If it isn’t, we should not spare a cent by ensuring this Masjid gets built Insha’Allah.
For a full overview and background, please click: http://umah.hk/about-us/