LOS ANGELES, California (April 30, 2012) – Coming off of their success at the LA Times Festival of Books last weekend, ICNA Southern California Chapter’s dawah project WhyIslam hosted a second large scale Dawah booth at the 23rd annual Fiesta Broadway Festival. This was the organization’s second consecutive year at the fair, which is described as the world’s largest Cinco de Mayo celebration.
Covering 12 blocks of the Downtown Los Angeles area, the festival drew nearly half a million people this year. WhyIslam volunteers distributed over 1,000 Spanish translations of the Qur’an and over 200 English language Qur’ans to booth visitors. Over 3,000 educational WhyIslam pamphlets in both Spanish and English were also distributed at the booth. The pamphlets covered topics ranging from the concept of Shariah to human rights in Islam.
Volunteers held live demonstrations at the booth, teaching visitors how to make ablution (wudu) and offering their five daily prayers for all to observe. They also gave classes on the daily prayers, the pillars of Islam and basic Islamic terms.
Booth visitors were keen to learn more about the Muslim faith, with eight taking their shahadah i.e. accepting Islam, on the spot. One person took his shahadah in the morning, and returned later with a friend who also accepted Islam. At least six more expressed a deep interest in the faith, taking extra literature with them to study further before accepting.
Booth organizers were extremely happy that several converts who accepted Islam at the LA Times Festival of Books last weekend volunteered at Fiesta Broadway this week, inviting others to learn more about their new faith.
The WhyIslam booth also attracted other vendors, including friendly volunteers from a Christian booth nearby. Members of the WhyIslam team were happy to talk to the volunteers and clarify any misconceptions about the Muslim faith.