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<strong>Unity</strong><br />

Newsletter of the Cambridge Muslim College<br />

issUe twO – septemebr 2011/shawwal 1432 print issUe<br />

CMC moves to new campus<br />

after twO years enjoying the hospitality of<br />

the Margaret Beaufort Institute of Theology on<br />

Grange Road, the College has now moved to its<br />

new buildings at 11-14 St Paul’s Road, on a site<br />

equidistant between Emmanuel College and<br />

the Mosque. Built in 1847, the buildings have<br />

been comprehensively refurbished to provide<br />

a range of state-of-the-art resources. Facilities<br />

include a kitchen, refectory, prayer room, library,<br />

men’s and women’s common rooms, lecture and<br />

supervision rooms, and rooms for administration<br />

and for our Research Fellows. The building<br />

includes a range of features generously funded<br />

by various donors, including Ottoman-style<br />

ceramic tiles in the ablution areas. Over the<br />

summer the facility has welcomed groups of students<br />

from the Ariane de Rothschild Fellowship, Cambridge<br />

Interfaith Programme, Heritage Summers, and other<br />

groups; and we are ready to welcome our biggest-ever<br />

intake of Diploma students in September.<br />

The College is actively seeking funding for the development<br />

of the large additional site at the rear of the<br />

property, which it has also purchased. This site formerly<br />

accommodated eight houses, which were demolished<br />

in the 1960s, and is one of the last large development<br />

opportunities in central Cambridge. }<br />

Stained glass window<br />

‘magnificent’<br />

We are grateful to an anonymous donor<br />

for her generosity in paying for the creation<br />

of a stained-glass window which has<br />

been installed over our main staircase.<br />

A combination of traditional English and<br />

Islamic designs, the window was designed<br />

and made by master-craftsmen Jamie Clark<br />

and Adam Williamson.<br />

cambridge mUslim cOllege, 14 st. paUl’s rOad, cambridge cb1 2ez www.cambridgemUslimcOllege.Org<br />

c m c n e w s l e t t e r 2 1

Imam of<br />

al-Aqsa visits<br />

On June 21 2011, corresponding to<br />

the Day of al-Isra wa’l-Mi’raj the college<br />

was honoured to receive Shaykh<br />

Yusuf Abu Sneina, Imam of Al-Aqsa<br />

Mosque, with a senior delegation of<br />

Middle Eastern scholars representing<br />

the World Association of Azhar<br />

Graduates, led by Dr Abdel Daim<br />

Nosear, its Secretary General. Others<br />

attending included Shaykh Abd<br />

al-Fadeel al-Qawsi, representing<br />

Shaykh al-Azhar Ahmad al-Tayyib,<br />

and also Shaykh Muhammad Imdad<br />

Hussain Pirzada, the Principal of<br />

Jamia al-Karam, Nottinghamshire.<br />

The delegation was introduced to<br />

the College’s work, and expressed<br />

its pleasure at the presence of Azhar<br />

graduates in the present student<br />

body. The event ended with a lunch,<br />

and prayers for the further success of<br />

the College. }<br />

Papal visit ‘a success’<br />

Rome was the location for the 2010 annual CMC excursion.<br />

Students and staff were hosted for five days at the Lay Centre<br />

at Foyer Unitas, located in the grounds of a monastery<br />

beside the Coliseum in Rome. The intensive programme<br />

included the following highlights:<br />

• A welcome address by the British Ambassador to the Holy<br />

See, Francis Campbell.<br />

• Lecture by Professor Daniel Madigan SJ, on ‘What Happens<br />

at Mass?’ followed by observation of an English-language<br />

mass at the Caravita church community.<br />

• Guided visit to the Palatine Hill, the Forum and the Coliseum,<br />

with art historian Dr Elizabeth Lev.<br />

• Guided visit to St Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museum,<br />

also with Dr Lev.<br />

• Visit to the Pontifical Institute for Arabic and Islamic Studies,<br />

with a welcome from its President, Miguel Ángel Ayuso<br />

Guixot MCCJ.<br />

• Lecture on ‘Muslim-Christian Relations in Italy’ by Imam<br />

Yahya Pallavicini, Imam of the Al-Wahid Mosque in Milan.<br />

• Visit to Sta Maria Maggiore and other sites of interest.<br />

• Visit to the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue,<br />

presented by Msgr. Khalid Akkache.<br />

• Visit to the Instituto Tevere, with a welcome speech by<br />

director Mehmet Cenap Aydın.<br />

2 c m c n e w s l e t t e r 2<br />

CMC in<br />

China<br />

Following a visit to<br />

Lanzhou, Dongshan and<br />

the Linxhia Hui Muslim<br />

Autonomous Prefecture<br />

in July 2010, CMC has<br />

been exploring ways of<br />

building ties with Islamic<br />

educational programmes in<br />

Central China. In January<br />

2011 CMC students heard<br />

a lecture on ‘Issues in Hui<br />

Muslim Inculturation’ from<br />

Professor Yang Wenjiong of<br />

Lanzhou University, who<br />

visited Cambridge with a<br />

group of Hui scholars, and<br />

learned more about the<br />

CMC’s work.<br />

right: village madrasa in dongshan country<br />

• Visits to the Pontifical Gregorian and Angelicum Universities<br />

and meetings with staff.<br />

• General Audience with Pope Benedict XVI.<br />

Following the trip, CMC Principal Dr. Muhammad As’ad<br />

said: ‘We are immensely grateful to the Lay Centre for<br />

their hospitality and help in coordinating such a complex<br />

and rewarding programme. Our students have been greatly<br />

enriched by the whole experience, and we look forward to<br />

future cooperation with our friends at the Lay Centre and at<br />

other key institutions in Rome.’ }

CMC in Senegal<br />

On 30 January, representatives from<br />

CMC visited the city of Touba, where<br />

they were received by HE the Khalifa Serigne<br />

Mukhtar, and met Touba graduates<br />

who have served in mosques in the West.<br />

The madrasas of Touba and the neighbouring<br />

city of Kaolack are currently<br />

host to an estimated thirty students from<br />

the English-speaking world, and CMC<br />

is exploring ways of building improved<br />

ties with this important sector. The visit<br />

ended with a seminar discussion on Islamic<br />

education in Europe at the Université<br />

Ante Diop in Dakar. }<br />

CMC takkes in the Yemen<br />

the distinctive cmc takke was sighted for the first time in<br />

Yemeni towns in January. The team gave several briefings on the<br />

CMC’s work to British and Australian students, several of whom<br />

expressed an interest in continuing their studies in Cambridge.<br />

Public lectures were given at the Ribat Tarim, Dar al-Mustafa, and<br />

the Faculty of Sharia at Ahqaf University, and visits took place<br />

to libraries and cultural institutions. CMC Dean Abdal Hakim<br />

Murad gave several interviews to Yemeni television, and participated<br />

in an hour-long radio discussion and phone-in with Shaykh<br />

Usama al-Sayyid of al-Azhar on issues of counter-radicalisation,<br />

which was broadcast in several provinces, including Abyan. A<br />

recording is available here (Arabic only): cambridgekhutbasetc.<br />

blogspot.com/2011/03/interview-in-yemen-arabic.html }<br />

New research fellows<br />

appointed<br />

In July 2011 the College was delighted to announce<br />

the following appointments of new full-time Research<br />

Fellows.<br />

fOzia bOra took her DPhil from the University<br />

of Oxford with a thesis on the development of medieval<br />

Islamic historiography. Her present research<br />

interests focus on Fatimid and Ayyubid Egypt, with<br />

a special emphasis on the evolution of educational<br />

institutions. She is currently writing a monograph<br />

on the madrasas and courts of Mamluk Egypt.<br />

shayKh mansUr ali completed his Alim studies<br />

at Darul Ulum (Bury) and al-Azhar University<br />

(Cairo), and received his PhD at the University of<br />

Manchester with a thesis entitled ‘Al-Tirmidhi and<br />

the role of the Isnad in his Sunan’. His specialisation<br />

is in Hadith Studies, but he works also on fiqh<br />

issues affecting the British Muslim community. He<br />

has served as imam in several locations, including<br />

Ashworth High Security Hospital, Liverpool.<br />

matthew wilKinsOn was a King’s Scholar at<br />

Eton, and subsequently studied Theology at Cambridge,<br />

completing his PhD at King’s College<br />

London with a dissertation on ‘History, Citizenship<br />

and Muslim Boys: Learning to Succeed’. His<br />

research interests include the sociology of Muslim<br />

youth, and Islamic Critical Realism. He has served<br />

as Lecturer in Education at London Metropolitan<br />

University, and Head of History at Brondesbury<br />

College (London).<br />

c m c n e w s l e t t e r 2 3

O t h e r n e w s<br />

F i e l d t r i p s<br />

Recent field trips for CMC students have<br />

included: * Ely Cathedral * BBC Cambridgeshire<br />

* Oxford Centre of Islamic<br />

Studies * Islamic Relief * House of Commons<br />

* Greenwich Observatory * Nafas<br />

Narcotic Rehabilitation.<br />

s y r i a n u l e m a v i s i t c m c<br />

On March 22, the CMC was privileged to<br />

receive a visit from the Mufti of Damascus,<br />

Shaykh Abdel Fattah El-Bizm, and Shaykh<br />

Husam Farfur, head of the undergraduate<br />

section at Al-Fath Islamic Institute. After<br />

visiting the premises the scholars spent<br />

time with our students, and discussed the<br />

experience of British students currently<br />

studying in Syria. Afterwards they made<br />

du’a for the continued success of the College.<br />

s h a y k h l a j p u r i p a s s e s a w a y<br />

CMC’s Abdal Hakim Murad visited<br />

Leicester to express condolences for the<br />

death of Shaykh Ahmed Ali Lajpuri Surty,<br />

who entered the next world on March 10.<br />

May Allah grant him light in the grave and<br />

salvation in Akhira.<br />

l e j l a d e m i r i m o v e s t o B e r l i n<br />

CMC has congratulated Dr Lejla Demiri,<br />

former lecturer and course convenor, as<br />

well as coordinator of our Rome trip and<br />

former CMC Women’s<br />

Officer, on her new post<br />

as Research Fellow at the<br />

EUME Wissenschaftskolleg<br />

in Berlin. Her critical<br />

edition of Najm al-Din al-<br />

Tufi’s al-Ta’liq ala al-Anajil<br />

al-Arba’a has been accepted for publication<br />

with E.J. Brill.<br />

c m c p u B l i c l e c t u r e s<br />

• CMC Dean Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad<br />

gave a lecture at the University of Cambridge’s<br />

Faculty of Divinity, entitled, ‘British<br />

Muslim Integration: The Perspectives<br />

of G.K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc’.<br />

• Professor Charles Burnett of the Warburg<br />

Institute spoke on ‘Arabic Learning<br />

and the Beginning of European Universities’.<br />

• Professor David Ford of Cambridge<br />

4 c m c n e w s l e t t e r 2<br />

University gave a lecture on ‘Scriptural<br />

Reasoning’.<br />

• Professor James Montgomery of Cambridge<br />

University spoke on ‘Al-Jahiz’s<br />

Book of Living Creatures’.<br />

• CMC Principal Dr. Muhammad As’ad<br />

gave a lecture at Pricewaterhouse Coopers<br />

at their London HQ entitled ‘Is there a<br />

Place for Faith in the Modern World?’<br />

• Dr Khaled Azzam, Chief Executive of the<br />

Prince’s School for Traditional Arts’, spoke<br />

on the work of his institution and the philosophy<br />

of Islamic art..<br />

• Dr. As’ad also gave a lecture to the East of<br />

England Faiths Council entitled, ‘Islamic<br />

Perspectives on Interfaith Dialogue.’<br />

• Shaykh Abdal Hakim spoke to the Christian-Muslim<br />

Forum meeting in Blackburn<br />

on ‘The King James Bible and the Study of<br />

Islam.’<br />

s o m e r e c e n t c m c i n t e r n a l<br />

s e m i n a r s<br />

• Dr Abdul Hayy Weinman, Professor of<br />

Intercultural Relations at the University<br />

of New Mexico, addressed our students<br />

on a range of issues, including the Islamic<br />

understanding of dialogue, and problems<br />

facing Hebrew-speaking Muslims in Jerusalem.<br />

• Faarid Gouverneur, founder of the<br />

Islamic Texts Society, spoke on questions<br />

of Muslim identity in secular societies.<br />

• Shaykh Yahya Rhodus of the Californiabased<br />

Zaytuna Institute discussed the interpretation<br />

of classical Islamic texts.<br />

• Julian Huppert MP visited the College<br />

to brief students on his work as Liberal<br />

Democrat MP for Cambridge, and answered<br />

questions on the impact on ethnic<br />

minorities of the introduction of university<br />

top-up fees<br />

c h i n e s e i s l a m i c c a l l i g r a p h y<br />

Chinese master-calligrapher Zainab Hui<br />

gave a one-day intensive course to CMC<br />

students and others.<br />

c m c l i B r a r y a p p e a l<br />

The CMC currently holds around 1500<br />

volumes. The emphasis is on Islamic Studies<br />

and on texts relevant to the curriculum<br />

of our Diploma Programme. We are<br />

currently launching an appeal for donations<br />

of more books in these two areas.<br />

Our thanks go to Shaykh Ahmad Bullock,<br />

former Imam of the Bath Street Mosque,<br />

Oxford, for the gift of over two hundred<br />

volumes. Books should be sent c/o The<br />

Librarian, Cambridge Muslim College, 14<br />

St Paul’s Road, Cambridge CB1 2EZ.<br />

n e w t r u s t e e a p p o i n t e d<br />

The CMC is delighted to welcome Professor<br />

David Ford, Regius Professor of<br />

Divinity in the University of Cambridge,<br />

as its newest Trustee.<br />

As Director of the<br />

Cambridge Inter-<br />

Faith Programme<br />

(www.interfaith.<br />

cam.ac.uk) and author<br />

of several landmark<br />

theological<br />

works, David brings<br />

a wealth of experience<br />

and wisdom to the College’s work.<br />

c m c p e o p l e p u B l i s h n e w B o o k s<br />

Dr Atif Imtiaz, the College’s Academic<br />

Director, has just released his new book,<br />

Wandering Lonely in the Crowd: Reflections on<br />

the Muslim Condition in the West (Kube Publishing),<br />

which was described as ‘striking<br />

and compelling’ by the Daily Telegraph.<br />

CMC Trustee Dr Sophie Gilliat-Ray has<br />

published her long-awaited Muslims in Britain:<br />

An Introduction (Cambridge University<br />

Press).<br />

h a F i z s e j a d a w a r d e d d o c t o r a t e<br />

We congratulate our Hifz and Hadith<br />

Memorisation Officer, Sejad Mekic, on his<br />

successful defence of his PhD dissertation<br />

on the Bosnian jurist Husejn Djozo, at the<br />

School of Oriental and African Studies,<br />

University of London.<br />

d a n i e l B i r n s t i e l a p p o i n t e d t o<br />

F r a n k F u r t<br />

We congratulate our former Research Fellow,<br />

Dr Daniel Birstiel, on his appointment<br />

to a prestigious lectureship at the University<br />

of Frankfurt. Daniel has supplied two<br />

academic papers on the Qur’anic text to<br />

CMC for inclusion on our website.<br />

d o n a t e t o c m c<br />

CMC is now a Registered Charity, and all<br />

donations by UK taxpayers are tax-deductible.<br />

We receive no government funding,<br />

and are dependent on the commitment and<br />

generosity of our donors. Cheques can be<br />

made payable to ‘The Cambridge Muslim<br />

College’ and posted to us at 14 St Paul’s<br />

Road, Cambridge, CB1 2EZ.

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