November is usually a busy month on campuses. In October things are still getting going, but in November they move into full force and the students start to get deeper into their studies and prepare for finals which are creeping up at both campuses. As such the month was basically us continuing our general services in both places as usual. The halaqas at both campuses are continuing. At USC the students are studying “Generous Tolerance in Islam” by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf. At UCLA the students decided that they want to spend some time studying why we should believe that the Quran is true and preserved. In that vein we will be reading some selections from Dr. Muhammad al-A’zami’s “History of the Quranic Text,” which is a fantastic read on the subject.
The other big issue this month was just dealing with, managing, and coping with the consequences of yet another terrible terrorist attack. The pressure upon the students and the questions that come as a result are many, but we were able to provide support as best as possible and hopefully get through it with a healthy and productive outlook. We were especially grateful for the positive support at USC where Shaykh Jamaal was part of two separate interviews on the negative consequences of such acts on regular Muslims in America. Their coverage was appreciated and is a source of hope for the future.
The big event of this month was at USC where the Ansar Service Partnership, one of the groups we serve at USC, hosted their annual Fast-a-thon event. In the event non-Muslims were asked to fast and money was raised and donated to ILM Foundation in Los Angeles. Shaykh Jamaal was a speaker at the event and also took part in an interfaith prayer service for the victims of terrorist attacks in France, Beirut, Nigeria, and all places around the world. With the coming of December the first chunk of the school year is already coming to a close. Please remember the students at UCLA and USC in your prayers as they wrap up their courses and get ready for their final exams.