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Year 7 visit the Madina Mosque – A student article by Amina Ali and Sakina Abubakari

The Year 7 students at Clifton were all invited to attend a trip to the Madina Mosque. We all went together on a coach and this was a really exciting day.

We entered the mosque through the main entrance and there was a shoe rack where they put their shoes. We took our shoes off and placed them on the rack. We had to do this because shoes carry dirt and muck, and it would have been inappropriate to have had our shoes in such a holy place. 

Our tour guide, Zahid, sat us down and gave us a brief introduction about Islam and the mosque, explaining to us some of the main reasons why we did certain things as we entered. He also taught us about the discipline of Islam and the correct etiquette when we enter the mosque.

Afterwards, we went to the Wudu area (ablution) where he showed us how to do ablution. The mosque has 2 areas for this, one for women and one for men. Zahid taught us the steps with the main steps being washing your face, arms, and feet.

After learning about Wudu, we went into the library where they stored lots of Islamic books. They had a large collection of the Holy Quran—the sacred book—in various colours, sizes and languages. Zahid kindly taught us some of the chapters and read out some verses to show people who were unfamiliar with the Quran.

We were all very impressed with Zahid’s talk to help us understand the Islamic faith further. A fellow student said, I was very interested in the Holy Quran and how many languages it can be translated into.”  We learnt that the Quran is translated in almost every language but only the Arabic version contains the true meaning of Gods words. 

Our next stop was to visit the first prayer hall, which was gorgeous because there was Arabic calligraphy on the wall that had Quran verses. In the prayer hall there is the Minbar (which is like a pulpit) where the Imam leads sermons, and the Mihrab is where the imam leads prayers following while the congregation pray behind him. The Minbar also directs Muslims to pray in the direction of the Kaaba in Mecca (the holy land). They pray towards the Kaaba because, in Islam, it teaches us to pray there.

Zahid explained to us the importance of praying for Muslims and he also taught us the similarity of the rest days with Judaism and Christianity. On Sunday, Christians have their rest day (the holy day), Jews have it on the evening of Friday, and Muslims have theirs on Friday. Muslims pray in congregation on Friday, which is called the Jumu’ah Prayer Friday.

When we were finished in the first prayer hall, we went to the last hall which amazed us. There was a huge chandelier, which is estimated to have over 200 bulbs, as well as Islamic calligraphy in gold across the walls stating the 99 names of Allah. There was also another Mihrab and Minbar in there.

A few brave students demonstrated how to pray and read out verses of the Quran, so other students were able to understand this. As a fellow students who went on the mosque trip, we felt there was a level of learning that took place through this experience that we could never really experience in the classroom. Zahid gave us one last talk about Islam and asked us if we had any questions. Everyone felt very happy with the tour and that Zahid was open to any questions, so no one had any hesitation to ask. As we made our way back to the shoe rack, we said our thanks, put back our shoes, and left with happiness.

We were all so impressed with our tour guide and were very grateful for the experience. Some things that people said were, “calming after we did prayer” and “it was nice coming in and learning all the things that you never knew before sitting in the mosque.”

The knowledge we received throughout the trip was so interesting and we were happy we could give feedback to our friends back at school. We were very grateful that we could go and that we were able to learn more about Islam as fellow Muslims. Thank you to everyone who went and to our tour guide, Zahid.

– Amina Ali and Sakina Abubakari Year 7 

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