MATW PROJECT: Community Rallies For The Best Of Causes
Rarely, if ever, does a day pass by that I am not completely ‘blown away’ by the generosity of the Muslim community.
And last Sunday night was definitely one of those occasions when I was absolutely staggered by the kindness and giving of our wonderful people.
The “My Ummah” live fundraiser podcast was held last Sunday night between 8pm – 11pm at the MATW Project’s Greenacre headquarters.
I was honoured to share the compering duties on the night with my dear friend and brother Ahmed Bassal.
It was both a privilege and a pleasure to share the hosting couch with Ahmed, who is a man of great wisdom, knowledge, goodness and humility….and who made a special trip to Sydney to play such a pivotal role in the success of this wonderful evening.
I have fond memories of my mission to Togo with Ahmed Bassal in October 2019, where we spent over a week; to see the legacy left by the late, great Ali Banat first hand is something I will never forget!
The principal theme of last Sunday’s live fundraiser was “to share the light of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in a time of darkness” and given the events of the past few weeks, this underlying message could not have been delivered in a more timely manner.
To see the greatest man who ever walked the earth held to ridicule in recent times both on social and general media – with the hypocrites responsible trying to justify their actions under the banner of “free speech” – is an insult to the intelligence of any decent man, woman or child – Muslim or non-Muslim.
Just as it is dismaying to see the leader of a once great democracy stirring up hatred towards our beautiful religion on a daily basis.
If Emmanuel Macron and his rantings are hurtful to those of us in Australia, one can only imagine the distress they are bringing to the minds and hearts of France’s five million Muslim citizens.
But Macron’s mindset and motives – not to mention his lack of morals in his personal life – are best left for another day and maybe another story for this column as why ruin what was a memorable night filled with hope, joy and love with talk about a leader whose lack of respect towards Islam and the greatest ever Prophet are not worth the time of day.
Thanks to our hard-working off screen production team, the fundraising podcast went off seamlessly, with a huge viewing audience not only throughout Australia but internationally.
Special guests included MATW CEO Mahmoud Ismail, Ali Banat’s brother Ahmet and Ahmet’s sons, Ibrahim and Taha (Ali’s nephews), among others.
The podcast featured several videos which you will find at the MATW Project’s Facebook page, many of them highlighting the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh’s) sheer kindness and generosity.
Our Prophet’s benevolence is something we can only admire and do our best to emulate in some small way.
The following passage written by American-based Shaykh Abdool Rahman Khan pays tribute to his humility and generosity:
“Even his enemies expected nothing but generosity from Mohummad, pbuh. He did not only reciprocate kindness and generosity, he extended it even to those who were unkind, rude and abusive to him.
“Nothing depicts this better than when he was cast out of the city of Taif with blood flowing from wounds after being stoned in the streets.
“The Angel Jibraeel appeared and said, “O Muhammad, your Lord has seen how your people have responded to you, your Lord has seen what they have said to you, so he has sent me with the angel of the mountains to place at your disposal. ’O Muhammad, if you want, command me and I will cause the two mountains of Taif to collapse upon them.”
“The Prophet ﷺ, still bleeding, his shoes wet with blood, said, “No! Rather, I pray that Allah blesses their children to be Muslims and worship Him alone. Even if they have rejected Islam, I pray that Allah blesses their progeny to be Muslim.”
The full amount raised in last Sunday’s fundraiser will assist the orphans of the MATW Project village in Togo, Africa.
Two masjids will be built, as will five Orphan Houses, while your generosity will also see hundreds and hundreds fed on an ongoing basis.
And if you are yet to make a donation, it’s not too late to do so!
Please….just click on the following link:
And remember, there is no better way to do Sadaqah than by putting smiles on the faces of those amazing young orphans – whose faces I can STILL see smiling when I close my eyes, more than a year after my time in Togo.
Speaking of time, it’s hard to believe that it’s been almost two and a half years since the great Ali Banat finally succumbed to his three year battle with Stage IV cancer.
At the time of diagnosis, medical experts gave Ali a maximum of six months to live….but Allah swt multiplied that timeframe sixfold to allow this wonderful humanitarian to build and establish what is now a thriving and remarkable complex in Togo.
Ali smiled through the pain during his three year ordeal, telling brother Mohamed Hoblos during a OnePath Network interview – which fittingly went viral – that his cancer was: “a gift from Allah swt.”
I have absolutely no doubt that Ali Banat would be a proud man if he was still alive today….surely chuffed by the generosity of the thousands of people who this week have contributed so magnificently towards his remarkable legacy.