331 Hafidzul Qur’an Memorization Graduates hold 1st Grand Commencement Exercises

On 23rd of September 2017, a thousand of Bangsamoro People occupied the Sultan Kudarat Municipal Gymnasium to witness the conduct of 1st-Ever Grand Commencement Exercises of 331 male and female Qur'an Memorizers from different Qur'anic Institutes and Centers in the Provinces of Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, North Cotabato, and South Cotabato, among others, that are being supervised by Jumeyyatul Huffaz bil Filibeen, Inc. 

This remarkable occasion was graced by some important personalities in the Bangsamoro including, among others, IMT M-12 Deputy Head of Mission - 1st Admiral Roslan bin Mohd Yunus RMN, Mufti of the Bangsamoro Sheikh Abuhuraira Udasan, Former Mayor - Datu Ahmad "Tucao" Mastura, and the President of Jumeyyatul Huffaz – Sheikh Mas-od Mohammadali Lantong. 

The IMT M-12 Deputy HoM expressed his special thanks to the organizers for inviting him in such prestigious occasion. He also sent his salute to give honor to the Huffaadh/Haafidhaat (Qur’an Memorizers) whom he considered as special among Muslims who can barely read the Qur’an. 

Mr. Roslan mentioned the virtues of the Noble Qur’an and advised the graduates to never stop their learning process. “Graduation is just the beginning that goes on throughout your lifetime.” He also encouraged them to continue to learn new things and try to become a better person everyday.  

The organizers and the crowd were very pleased to have the presence of the Mufti of the Bangsamoro himself, Sheikh Udasan. He started his speech with the Verse 9 of Surah Al-Israa’ (The Night Journey) which says: “Indeed, this Qur’an guides to that which is most suitable and gives good tidings to the believers who do righteous deeds that they will have a great reward.” 

With this, he dwelled on the immeasurable virtues of the Qur’an and he stated that it is the Constitution of each, and every Muslim. 

He also mentioned that to successfully reform a society, there ought to have to be both the skill and spirituality. Moreover, he also cited that the Qur’an is the guide in fostering unity. He recited the Verse 46 of Surah Al-Anfaal (The Spoils of War) which says: “And obey Allah and His Messenger, and do not dispute and [thus] lose courage and [then] your strength would depart; and be patient. Indeed, Allah is with the patient.” 

“All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety (taqwa) and good action. Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood…” – as Mufti quoted from the Last Sermon of Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam). 

On the last portion of his speech, he strongly advised the youth to have Taqwallah (Fear of Allah). Then he recited the Verse 197 of Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow) which says: “…And whatever good you do – Allah knows it. And take provisions, but indeed, the best provision is fear of Allah. And fear Me, O you of understanding.” And lastly, he ended his discussion with the quote: “The sovereign nation will not stand up on his own feet unless upon the shoulders of the Youth and the wisdom of the Elders.” 

Former Municipal Mayor of Sultan Kudarat – Datu Ahmad “Tucao” Mastura also delivered his speech. He warmly congratulated all the parents and guardians of the graduates whom he considered the richest people in the world. He also emphasized that it is through the Noble Qur'an that Islam will be successfully planted in the Bangsamoro Land. 

Moreover, he mentioned that the authentic understanding the real meaning of Qur'an is the key to unite different groups and finally attain peace and harmony in the community. 

At the end of his speech, he encouraged everyone to support one another to increase the number of Huffaadh/Haafidhaat (Qur'an memorizers) because he believes that it is a means to attain the Mercy of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) upon the society. 

In behalf of the Jumeyyatul Huffaz bil Filibeen, Inc., Sheikh Mas-od Lantong, the President, extended his sincere gratitude to each and everyone who had been part of the occasion and the completion of Qur’an memorization of over 300 young Bangsamoro. He specially mentioned the leadership of Sultan Kudarat Municipality for their continued support to this noble educational program which is manifested by housing the home of Huffaadh in the Bangsamoro Region. 

Furthermore, to the Lajnatu Tarbiya wa Ta’lim (Committee on Education) of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front for their continued commitment towards educating the Bangsamoro communities. 

Sheikh Mas-od also commended the efforts of the Professional-Parents who are eager to produce children who are among the people of Qur’an. One of them he mentioned was Prof. Raby Angkal who just had a son who received excellent award in memorizing the Qur’an (Ijaaza). 

This is the best blessing from Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) above all your achievements in this world. Not all people receive this kind of blessings.”, he said as he explained how blessed these parents are in having children who memorized the Qur’an. 

It was narrated that Buraydah said: “The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wasallam) said: ‘Whoever reads the Qur’aan, learns it and acts in accordance with it, on the Day of Resurrection his parents will be given a crown to wear whose light will be like the light of the sun, and his parents will be given garments which far surpass everything to be found in this world. They will say, “Why have we been given this to wear?” It will be said, “Because your child learned the Qur’aan.”’- (Narrated by al-Haakim, 1/756) 

At his closing, he expressed his special message to the IMT Contingents present in the event to continue their commitment to help for the success of the Peace Process in the Philippines, particularly in Mindanao. The attainment of genuine and lasting Peace in the Bangsamoro will be a great reason to produce more and more Qur’an Memorizers. 

This Grand event was also graced by other respected Ulama such as Sheikh Ebrahim Macadato - Representative from International Qur'anic Memorization and Sheikh Abdullah Lacsa, Mudir of Zayd bin Thabit Qur’anic Institute of Marawi City, among others. 

The highlights of the event also included the awarding of Ijaaza for those who were able to memorize and pronounce properly each and every letter of the Qur’an. This Excellence award issued from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia was personally handed-over by Sheikh Bukhari Yahya Camama to the awardees namely Mohammad Saqr Talumpa Angkal and Razie Saluang Abdulmaula. 

Having memorized the Qur’an is indeed a Great Blessing from Allah (subhaanahu wa ta’ala) among His selected servants. Nothing can commensurate the highest level of reward that these people are being prepared with: Ibn Amr reported that the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “It will be said to the companion of the Qur’aan after he has entered Paradise, ‘Recite, and rise!’ For every verse he recites he will rise one level (in Paradise), until he recites the last verse with him (i.e., in his memory)", (Abu Dawud).