Wednesday, June 15, 2011

CHRONICLE OF A FRIEND'S SOUL SEARCHING

Drag the play bar to start if it buffers.


videokeman mp3
Angel – Sarah Mclachlan Song Lyrics
Today, I was tagged by a note in Facebook from a dear friend and classmate of mine since year one in College. Reluctantly, I anticipated that the note is just a typical read from a newspaper but bang! I was mocked by the reality it pertains and I cannot contain it in the first 10 minutes after reading. I was thoughtful of the changes it will bring to her and her family whom I've known for years and they are one big straight devotee of Catholic faith.

Who are we to say we're in the right faith of Religion? We might not have tried understanding both sides of the coin. Most of us have grown under our parents' beliefs and acquired it without even bothering digging the truth and blindly deprived ourselves from the fact that there are so much out there in the wilderness of faith to consider. Quickly, I embraced the fact that no religion can save us, its the faith and good deeds that will lead us to eternal life. This one indeed is one good example of a so-called SOUL SEARCHING. All the best Chuy!

This is the tagged FB note.




in my 28th (a letter my mother won't finish reading) 
by Maria Anna Penales on Wednesday, June 15, 2011 at 7:09pm


28 years of being a Roman Catholic, born from a devout-Catholic generation, raised in a Christian environment, bred through a private Marian Catholic school, and a typical sinful human that has been through being a former rebel daughter to a changed, responsible one, then exposed in a mixed environment with Muslims in her twenty's...that is I - Maria Anna Theresa C. Penales, now a new Muslimah. I have believed in Islam through reading the Qur'an english translation online, a sudden thought to come to my mind on the morning after the night I solemnly prayed to God for guidance, to show me the right way, entrusting to Him the issues in my life I don't know how to handle anymore. Everything written on it caught & opened my heart & mind until I have even dared to do the unexpected, to change my Faith into something I know now as the Only & True religion required by God and the religion of peace, bringing to me the peace that I feel now. All the while, I keep on getting signs either from dreams or from the verses I have read after asking for them & offering the issues/doubts on my prayers. So fast I get the answers & clues. I feel that God really has guided me as what He has promised that He will guide those who just believe & put their trust unto Him. I feel the signs have been shown to me already, even the calling & it’s just for me to accept it or not. I was converted in a short span of time, after completed reading the Qur'an in 15 days, by myself alone & without being told by anybody, not even my boyfriend who is actually a born-Muslim. Though we had sharings, questions & discussions before concerning each other's religion, we both respected each other's faith and not pressuring the other on his/her own way of spiritual life. I even started reading and believing without him around anymore to relate to me the stories, teachings and prayers in the Qur'an. I believe that he has been only an instrument for me to be aware and witness the Islamic way of being close to our Creator and Owner. God has also blessed me enough free time to reflect on this realization. And so, I have decided, for the good of my own soul, as what I have felt while reading the holy verses in the Qur'an, to be in the Straight Path - the Islamic Way. This is my new life. This change is something that can not be taken away from me now. It is for the cause of Allah - my One God, only Owner, Provider & Protector; and not for the cause of marriage, as some will usually comment. Whatever will happen between me & my boyfriend, this change is something that I will pursue, and with or without the consent of my parents. I just pray that inshaAllah, He will also bring light to them, for as what the Qur'an has stated- “And whomsoever Allah wills to guide, He opens his breast to Islam; and whomsoever He wills to send astray, He makes his breast closed and constricted, as if he is climbing up to the sky. Thus Allah puts the wrath on those who believe not. And for whosoever disbelieves, on them will be a painful torment forever." Everything I have experienced since reading the Qur'an was miraculous & enlightening in a spiritual way, bringing me blessings I never thought would have happened. It made me realize also that having the slightest encounter, even just an acquaintance, with a pious Muslim, can actually be a blessing and a chance to be saved. I know I am about to be faced with tough issues and problems especially concerning the reaction of my family, but I just put all my trust to God, for He will just take care of it all and let no grief to be on the believers. There will just be trials for a while but after few hardships will come a great reward for the patient.
March 16-31, 2011 - I have read the 114 chapters of Qur'an
April 11 -I offered my shahada/Muslim profession of faith privately in my night prayer.
From April 12 - I started knowing & practicing the Islamic prayers.
May 8, Mothers' Day - unexpectedly, I have done my shahada in public in the Muslim Center of Abu Dhabi with kabayan Muslim brother & sisters as witnesses and having Maria Anna Penales as my Muslim name
May 12 - day before my flight away from UAE, 8th day of Gamad Thani month in Islamic calendar, marked the date on my certificate of Embracing Islam from Abu Dhabi Shariah Court, first time i dressed in abaya in public but coincidentally, none who know me saw me that time.
July 8 - inshaAllah, on my 29th birthday, will be my Philippines registration as Muslim.
Everything just happened suddenly & as a good surprise. I realized this has become a great remembrance, gift & blessing for me from living in UAE, a special chance for that hope of entering paradise promised in the Qur'an to those who believe & obey God’s first & most important commandment – to have no other god besides Him. Alhamdullilah. All praise & thanks be to Allah. ( June 4, 2011 )


at Shariah Court after conversion


Desert Safari, Dubai


Villa 3 days

3 comments:

  1. maria anna penalesJune 16, 2011 at 6:15 PM

    hala..ako man nang gwapa oh naka abaya?hahaha.... hanep ka talaga chuy..hahaha.pareha ta nashock...naa pa man sab kuy culture shock..culture shock sa sarili lang ako hahaha

    ReplyDelete
  2. grabe ka chuy you make my knees shiver...haha...bantog diay nahilom ka ha. nag soul searching na diay ka...yup sa culture ko na shock dili sa religion...dili ka mingawon sa buboy? hehe

    ReplyDelete
  3. hoi brad watch ur word klanagan HALAL permi......hehehe........

    ReplyDelete

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