Posted on Apr 29, 2019
The horrible and tragic attacks, shootings and terrorism of the past few weeks have us shook. Like many of you, we are reeling, upset, questioning and praying. All three major Abrahamic faiths have had houses of worship attacked and congregants killed through mass shootings or bombings around the world - from Christchurch in New Zealand during Friday prayers to various churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday to most recently a Passover service at a synagogue in California.
There are so many stories and issues to explore here, starting with honoring the victims of these horrific attacks. Digging out the roots of evil and where and how terrorists are radicalized, how to keep our houses of worship safe, combatting hateful rhetoric with clear, truthful and loving speech, protecting our children - these are just some of the things so many of us are thinking about and wrestling with.
With Ramadan just days away - when masajid across the world will be filled nightly with Muslims attending tarawih and at the end of the month for Eid ul Fitr prayers - safety and protection are on the minds of so many, including myself. When I toured my own local masjid, which plans to open just in time for Ramadan, one of my first questions was what safety measures would be in place.
I know I'm not the only one worrying about this. A New York Times article reported that active shooter drills and congregational meetings to teach people how to be safe are increasing at masajid, synagogues, churches and other houses of worship across the U.S.:
Sara Shanab, 23, whose family goes to the [Islamic Center of Fredericksburg, Va], said she feels more anxiety as the presidential election season draws near. Her community has experienced harassment before, but fear was heightened after the shootings in New Zealand last month, when a gunman killed 50 people at two mosques.
“The community comes together under times of chaos and stress,” she said. “I do feel a sense of safety in that.”
Russell Moore, the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, said active shooter drills had become more common for church staff and security teams. His church in Nashville on Sunday morning included a lament for how many shootings and acts of violence in places of worship there have been in recent months.
“Every religious group feels vulnerable right now as the violence feels unpredictable and chaotic,” he said. “We can disagree about all sorts of important things, even ultimate things, but surely every person ought to agree that no one should be gunned down in worship.”
Here at Haute Hijab, we want to offer a dua for everyone's safety and protection as we head into Ramadan. Ya Rab - please protect everyone this Ramadan and beyond. Please allow us to pray and worship You in peace and accept our ibadah. Please protect our fellow Jewish, Christian and other friends at their houses of worship as well. Ameen.
Here is another dua for safety and protection that we can all recite. It is reported that the Prophet (saw) said,
“Whoever recites [this dua] three times in the morning will not be afflicted by any calamity before evening, and whoever recites it three times in the evening will not be overtaken by any calamity before morning.”
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الَّذِي لَا يَضُرُّ مَعَ اسْمِهِ شَيْءٌ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَلَا فِي السَّمَاءِ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ
Bismillahilladhi la yadurru ma’ ismihi shai’un fil-ardi wa-laa fissamaa’i wa huwa al-Samee’u al-‘Aleem
In the Name of Allah, with Whose Name nothing on the earth or in the heaven can cause harm, and He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.
May your Ramadan be one filled with love and worship, peace and protection. Ameen.