Zakat and Institutional Development

Is Zakat money applicable to the MCA’s activities? Yes!

The Official Position

“The offerings given for the sake of God are meant only for the poor and the needy, and those who are the managers thereof, and those whose hearts are to be won over, and for the freeing of human beings from bondage, and for those who are overburdened with debts, and for every struggle in God’s cause, and for the wayfarer: this is an ordinance from God - and God is all-knowing, wise”. (The Quran 9:59)

The Muslim Council of America (MCA) through its community service serves the poor and needy through programs such as free health clinic, distribution of free food. Extending these charitable programs to non-Muslims, as also educational programs of MCA serving Islam among non-Muslims, will serve the purpose of winning over their hearts.

The MCA has educational programs on Islam to strive for its better understanding, on the Muslims new identity with the purpose of keeping it subordinated to the essentials of Islam, and on the political process in America with the purpose of advancing Muslims participation. All of this work is to serve Islam, for the empowerment of Muslims, and for producing better image of Islam- this is “the Muslims struggle in God’s cause” in a land such as America.

Our scholars including those associated with the Islamic Fiqh Council of North America have already reached to the conclusion that Muslim organizations engaged in serving Islam through social and educational programs qualify for the zakat fund and Zakat ul fitr.The above statement reflects a unanimous view and endorsement of the following
1.Zainab Alwani: Ph.D in Islamic Shariat, Member of the Fiqh Council.of ISNA
2. Inam ulhaq,M.A in islamic studies , Professor of Islamic program, Elmhurst College and Imam at a Masjid, Chicago.
3. Syed Farooq Ahmed-son of Maulana Mawdoodi
4. Dr. Aslam abdullah, Author of books on islam, Director, Islamic Center, Las Vegas

Zakat in Islam, we all know, is an obligation and a duty and not an option left to an individual,s sweet choice or convenience. Out of many avenues available to spend one’s Zakat, an individual does have the option to choose the one that better serves the purpose of the Zakat.. Ulemas all over the world agree that unlike the olden days, Zakat is better managed in an organized and systematic way rather than given in a scattered and incoherent fashion to better meet the demands of the contemporary living.It should be given not just to to the poor and disabled people but spent also to help the unemployed and sick people in an institutionalized setting to enable the needy people to stand on their own feet with dignity and productive spirit. In the system of the old country from where Muslims came, for example, Zakat was used to buy the sewing machines and help the woman to get married etc. In a new society like America, where Muslims have new problems to wrestle with ranging from survival to the attainment of dignity both at the the individual and the collective level,,different kinds of supportive systems are needed; new mechanisms have to be evolved to help the sick, socially disabled, and battered and runaway women,for instance. To quote Tariq Ramadan- who was named by the Time magazine as the top thinker along with other world class visionaries ,”It is necessary to study one’s society and ones community— to understand the logic of marginalization, the various kinds of social and financial breakdowns, and the range of difficulties and to work with a view of of the whole picture”. To illustrate the above emphases, when Muslims design the free medical service for America that should include both Muslims and non-Muslims as long as they are needy, but it will perhaps be better executed if Muslims combine their work with other American charitable organizations to achieve additional benefits that are desirable for the Muslim community struggling to fit in the pluralism of America.

While making decisions on Zakat and Zakatul Fitr we request you to think of the MCA and its vital programs working for the development of the needed institutions. For a brief review of the MCA and its projects, go to www.newmca.com and look for MCA Introduction to the extreme left going down vertically.. Your support to MCA will indeed give an added impetus to the organization to serve Islam and the community effectively and efficiently. For any information on giving , feel free to call 9133148074, or cell 412 401 2820, or go to Donate on the website

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