Day 15 – Toronto, ON, CN
Peace and Blessings to All. This is Hamza Abdullah checking in from the Abdullah Brothers Ramadan Tour. Man, Man, Man. Why do I feel like I’ve been on 15 Recruiting Trips in 15 days? LOL. To be honest, I’m not sure I wouldn’t have committed on every single trip. LOL. Just like I did when I was choosing a college, I’ve had to tell the respective coaching staffs (Shaykhs, Imams and community members), that I have to consult with my parents (and wife) first. If Cities were colleges, I would say Toronto was like the University of Oregon. They had a chauffeured Cadillac Escalade waiting for us. The swag bag, couldn’t have been constructed better. Even if Phil Knight himself, packed the bag. Brothers Uthman, Luqman and Hany were the Graduate Assistants who sacrificed sleep, family time and food. Brother George was Coach Mike Belotti. He talked a good game, and made sure the ship ran smooth. It was his offense, he called the plays, and he didn’t like audibles. Shaykh Abu Hurairah was Bill Moos. He was the shot caller. He didn’t say much, but when he spoke, his words were like priceless jewels. Our ESPN 150 profile would say 1) Toronto, ON, CN.
Abbas was the lead on this trip to Canada. Husain and I were Canadian rookies, so he took the wheel. As we prepared to cross into Canada, Abbas told us what he would say to the border patrol. We would just say we’re going to meet friends, and have fun. But as we rolled the window down, she started firing questions like she was a doctor, and we had no insurance. It was funny, but not funny, at the same time. She wanted to know our intentions. She wanted to know, what would possess three young guys to get a car, and drive from Los Angeles, California to Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She was even more perplexed, when we told her, we were only half way through our journey. The truth is, we’re doing this strictly for the sake of God. We want to make sure our intentions are pure, and God willing, they are.
Today is Jummah. The Friday Prayer. It is the weekly congregational prayer, and everyone wore their finest garments. We were scheduled to attend the Jummah prayer, have a meeting about the rights of Hajj (the Holy Pilgrimage), pray our Asr (afternoon prayer) then speak to the youth. The Q + A session is always the best, and this trip made it even better. Questions started coming in for Abbas. As the older brother, and the “behind the scenes” guy, he usually just passes the buck. But they were not letting him off that easy. It was his day. He answered questions. He spoke to the youth. He was interviewed by the Toronto Star, and he was even presented with an award. It was great to see him get the recognition he deserves. The “Abdullah Bros” may look like it’s just Husain and myself. But it’s not. It’s a bunch of us. As he was receiving his reward, I truly felt I “wanted for my brother, what I wanted for myself.”
God bless the entire community in Toronto, the ISNA Canada center, as well as the CDA. The Canadian Dawah Association, does great work to promote interfaith and intercontinental, dialogue and relationships. We were fortunate to be guests of the CDA, and God wiling they will have continued success. On Friday I read a specific Surah (Chapter), and that is number 18 Kahf (The Cave). There are so many lessons in this Surah and a big one comes in Ayah’s 23-24:
“Nor say of anything, “I shall be sure to do so and so tomorrow”, without adding “So please Allah” (God willing).”
That’s why I try and make sure when I make my intentions, I follow it with “God willing”. These plans are not up to me. They’re God’s plan. And God willing we are heading to Boston, to visit the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center. Imam Suhaib Webb’s Masjid. I am very much, looking forward to this trip. God willing, we can catch a glimpse of Fenway Park while we’re there. Thank you for your time and consideration. Until tomorrow, God willing. Peace and Be Blessed.
PS Husain’s blog is a GOOD ONE!