Day 24 – Houston, TX
Peace and blessings to All. This is Hamza Abdullah checking in for the Abdullah Brothers Ramadan Tour. Southern Hospitality is not a game. We were told before we arrived that we would be shown “southern hospitality”, and I don’t think I fully understood what that meant. We showed up to the hotel to a pimped out hotel room equipped with clothes, hats, drinks and even astronaut food. God willing, A freeze dried ice cream bar, will be a gift for my children when I return home. If you think that’s the extent of it, you’d be wrong.
I imagined the Clear Lake Islamic Center (CLIC) to be a nice facility, with ample space. But I discounted the “Texas Factor”. Everything is bigger in Texas, and that includes the Masjid amenities. Ping pong tables, basketball courts, players lounges and even a jungle gym. You name it, they got it. But if you think the facilities were the best part of the trip, again, you’d be wrong. Our hosts Omar and Aamir, along with his family, wanted to make sure we remembered Houston. At the Mosque they took care of us and when we were done with our program, they brought us over to their home. Umm Aamir greeted us at the door, and by the smell of the house, I should have known we were in for some good food. She brought plate, after plate, after plate out to the table. We had authentic Texas BBQ, along with some great desserts. I don’t know if anyone can compete with this spread.
Our programs at the Mosque have been ran very smoothly. Abbas takes command of the mic and dictates the action. We have a small talk then it’s time for Q+A. This is by far the best part of the event. We can always distinguish the questions from the brothers and the questions from the sisters. The sisters questions are always written as if they used the iPhone auto correct. The hand writing is as if they all studied calligraphy. The depth of the question is one that philosophers probably sit around and drink tea over. Then we get to the men… “Kobe or LeBron?”. Like seriously? LOL. I love my brothers, but we can talk about those questions after the program. The really young girls have the cutest little questions. “Do you like playing football?” and yesterday we even got a “What’s your phone number?”. LOL. The best part of this trip has been the interaction with the people.
The leader of the community, Imam Waleed Basyouni, said he wanted to have a “Cool Masjid”. He wanted the Mosque to be the community center, and it is. His blueprint for success is one that all communities should take notice of. The website was constantly updated, they were very active on social media and the attention paid to the needs of the Sisters and the youth, were impressive. If I need a job, to know what time prayer was, or even what the topic of Jummah (Friday Prayer) was/is, I can get it right on the website. The time and efforts of the individuals at CLIC are to be applauded. Thank you for being such gracious hosts, and I pray God continues to shower your community and your families with His unlimited bounties and blessings. Thank you to the entire Clear Lake Islamic Center staff and community. I will refrain from naming anyone, because I don’t want to leave anyone out. But I will say a special thank you to the sister who leads the youth group. She supplied us with free candy. Yes free candy gets you a shout out. We were taken care of, but the cherry on top was when Abbas was honored. He works so hard, and to see him being recognized for his hard work, is truly appreciated. Thank you for giving me that honor, of honoring my brother. God willing we are on our way to Dallas, so please keep us in your prayers. Thank you again for your time and consideration. Peace and Be Blessed.
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