Why Leeds New Muslims?
“Let there arise a group who invite others to a good path”
It is a divine command and one which the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) never ceased to give his utmost effort and concern. The Prophet (pbuh) clearly realised that the most effective way to spread and inform people of the message of Islam was through “people of their own tribe (i.e. a local person who knew the cultural norms of his society). This group of people, by the nature of Islam’s universal appeal, will never be exclusively English alone but will include other useful members who support the aim of inviting the local population in a sympathetic and understanding manner.
Our experiences have shown that there is a steady flow of people interested in Islam, who with guidance will embrace Islam. The LNM may be regarded as only a catalyst in a person embracing Islam. One aspect that has concerned us is some people after embracing Islam, slowly lose contact with the mosque and the Muslim community. In order to reverse this we try to provide social gatherings together with an element of learning the general principles and concepts of Islam.
LNM is an organisation run by a team of volunteers who have embraced Islam or who have family members who have embraced Islam. We strive to support new Muslims, and anyone who maybe interested in learning more about Islam.
Many working in the organisation are English born and therefore of the indigenous culture, but at the same time are well acquainted with the local Muslim community. As a result they are familiar with both English and Muslim sensitivities. This means we are in a unique position during these particularly strained times to bring mutual understanding between the local Muslim and the wider communities of Leeds. Islam is the glue that binds this community. Evidence of this can be seen by the fact that we are from many cultures, colours and backgrounds. Where most communities are monolithic (i.e. Kurdish, Pakistani etc) this community is unique in its variety. English, Moroccan, Kurdish, French, South African, Indian, Guyanese, Gambian, Irish, West Indian, Polish, American, Canadian and many more.
A second unique character is that we aim to cater for families (we are not a men only group). We see the family as the living heart of a Muslim community. A third unique character is that, the community is more in touch with the wider non-Muslim community (Christian majority). The fact that many are indigenous people, makes interaction with the wider non-muslim community much easier.