New Horizon School, Irvine’s fifth – eighth grade students participated in the tenth annual Hassan Hathout Legacy Foundation’s essay contest. The Hassan Hathout Foundation is an educational nonprofit organization whose mission is to spread the message of ‘Love in God’ through the work and legacy of Hassan Hathout. This year, students were asked to submit an essay titled “How to Grow a Loving Heart” in which they describe how this topic relates to a personal activity or experience, historic event, or current world event. The contest expanded on the national level to include numerous distant states. We are pleased to announce that 5 students from our fifth – eighth grades were selected as winners!
We’d like to congratulate Maryam, Alina, Zacharia, Hamza, and Muhammad for their hard work and truly inspirational writing. The following are excerpts from the students’ essays:
“Doing the best job in everything that we do is a big part of Islam and a major part of growing a loving heart. Dr. Hassan Hathout must have exemplified this in his life. Not only was he a great family man, but also he was a great physician, thinker, poet, speaker, and author. The only way he could have been great at so many things is if he tried his best in everything that he did.”
“Animals, nature, the Earth, and human beings are few of the many creations of Allah (SWT). These creations provide us with an opportunity to show love and kindness by taking care of them. The Earth, animals, and nature all provide what is necessary for human survival. In return, it is our job as human beings to take care of what gives us sustenance, but we do not always live up to this obligation.”
“When a believer is afflicted with pain, even that of a prick of a thorn or more, God forgives his sins, and his wrongdoings are discarded as a tree sheds its leaves,”… The comparison of a person’s choices to an everyday sight such as falling leaves imprints a reminder to a person’s mind that Islam welcomes mistakes with open arms as long as repent and learning is followed after.”
“Our connection with nature traces back one thousand four hundred and one years ago when the Prophet (SAW) walked this earth. He said, “If the Resurrection were established upon one of you while he has in his hand a sapling, then let him plant it.” Examples such as this provide hope that it is never too late to make a difference in reviving our relationship with God’s creation.”
“The root word of womb in Arabic means mercy. In surah Al-Alaq it references that we all started as a tiny clot, but Allah’s mercy is so powerful that he allows the woman to help develop the child from a tiny lifeless clot of blood. This is one of the greatest mercies imaginable because it shows Allah’s power by creating something so complex and unique from something so simple and tiny.”
We hope these students will continue to inspire us all to “grow a loving heart” and make the world a better place for our children. A special event will be held for the top contestants where each will receive a monetary award.