Filipino nurse embraces Islam



Jeddah: Fouzia Khan

Published — Friday 11 May 2012

Last update 14 May 2012 10:32 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

When 55-year-old Duris Newels, head nurse at Abdulkarim Bakr Medical Center, Jeddah, embraced Islam last week, it was a proud moment for the clinic and its staff.
Newels, now Dania Newels, was a Catholic Christian working at the center for the past five years.
"It is a proud moment for us. We are delighted to announce that our head nurse accepted Islam on her own wish and we wish her success. I also thank our Muslim staff members who helped Dania in understanding Islam in its right perspective," said Dr. Tawfik M.N. Rahaimy, CEO and executive director of the medical center.
"We at the center are not just staff members but are a small family," he added, thanking Mohammed Bakr, chairman of the board of trustees, and Dr. Zakiya Baker Muhandis for their "continued support to the clinic and staff".
Speaking to Arab News, new Muslim Dania said that although she had been a Catholic for a long time, she wasn't a practicing Catholic. She went to a Catholic school because her "parents told her to do so".
"My family and relatives call themselves Catholic Christians. So when you are born in such an environment, you have to accept whatever is around you, without ever knowing what religion exactly is," Dania said.
"In the Philippines, when I was young, we had a very negative conception of Muslims; we believed that they are bad people, traitors, and are always against us. We never dealt with or studied about faith; it was only in our mind," she added.
When Dania came to Saudi Arabia in 1990 to work, it was the first time she met many Muslims.
"I was shocked to know about Muslims, their religion and practices because I had never seen anything like that in the Philippines. I had never seen a mosque or heard the Salah. I gained all this basic information here," she said.
Dania describes her life as a 'roller coaster" with many ups and downs. She has hopped from one religion to another but none satisfied her, she said.
"When you are despaired in life, you always look for someone who can help you. I have been to the church but nothing satisfied me," she said.
Dania befriended several Muslims here but the thought of embracing Islam never crossed her mind until an incident that she says changed her perspective about life.
"Five years ago, I never thought that such a moment will come in my life. Life is very difficult. I started to ponder on what being a Muslim is like. I asked my Muslim friends about it and what they had to say, such as about the Day of Judgement, hell fire and life in the Hereafter, interested me. They told me that Allah SWT is the only Creator, Nourisher and Sustainer and there is none besides Him and Muhammad (peace be upon him) is the last Prophet. Belief in these principles makes one a Muslim; it is so simple," Dania said.
She further read books on Islam, watched videos on the life of the Prophet (pbuh). She read about the difference between the Bible and the Qur'an and compared the two religions.
"Though I understood many things, I still had doubts in my mind. One day we received a patient who was about to die. She was hospitalized for a long time due to a back fracture. I asked for a sign from God. I said to God that I will accept Islam if the patient, Sultana, is cured," she said.
Dania said she was not quite expecting Sultana to recover. "The same day Dr. Tariq informed me that Sultana had recovered and was doing well. I didn't know what was going on. I was sweating and didn't know what to say. I told Dr. Tariq about the sign I had asked God to give. That very moment I realized that I must keep my words and accept His true religion, the path He showed me," Dania recalled.
Dania went to Makkah to perform Umrah after she accepted Islam last Friday. "I only pray that Allah SWT will guide me on the right path and will be there for me always. I hope I am not late in discovering the light of truth," she said.
"Islam is a complete religion, which not only belongs to Saudi Arabia and the Arabs but it is the religion of the universe. In Islam, you are directly dealing with your Creator. It is not only for your present life but also for your life in the hereafter," said Chairman Bakr, congratulating Dania and praying for her guidance.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

DAMMAM: All Saudi airports, particularly King Fahd International Airport (KFIA) in Dammam, lack a tourism attraction strategy which requires a formal decision from the government, said Saeed Al-Qahtani, an investor in the tourism sector.He said: “In...
JEDDAH: Interpol is looking for two Saudis — a former Jeddah mayor and former president of a sports club — who have been convicted in cases related to the 2009 flash floods here.The ex-mayor was sentenced to seven years in prison while the sports off...
RIYADH: The Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) recently discussed here the scope of cooperation with the Kingdom’s Public Education Evaluation Commission (PEEC) in the field of education.The delegation was headed...
RIYADH: Investors and proprietors of recruitment offices have blamed the Ministry of Labor for the rise in the number of illegal brokers, saying that some of the rules are actually counterproductive and promoting black market.The ministry has put a c...
DAMMAM: A period of 20 months will be granted to deliver residential apartments for beneficiaries in the Eastern Province, starting from the day of delivering land to developers, and not from the date of signing the contract with them, according to a...
ALKHOBAR: Bribery can be eliminated by applying the laws strictly and creating public awareness besides an active role by citizens, experts say.Abdulrahman Al-Zahian, a researcher in legal affairs and public policy, said: “The Saudi anti-bribery law...
JEDDAH: Zuhair Rahbeeni, a consultant at the Pediatric and Clinical Genetics Department of Medical Genetics at King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, said that the criteria used for premarital health examinations fall short of proper st...
JEDDAH: The police in Jeddah found a runaway girl after 17 days. A news website reported that she had gone missing after she took a taxi on one of Jeddah's roads.The mother of the girl said that the police found the girl on Friday after 17 days. She...
JEDDAH: Since the launch of the Asir Initiative, “Asir … a major tourism destination all year round,” under the patronage of Asir Governor and Chairman of the Tourism Development Council Prince Faisal bin Khalid at the end of 2013, the region has man...
RIYADH: King Saud University (KSU), which is leading the vanguard in promoting and supporting scientific research in the Kingdom, will host the Saudi international conference on scientific publishing for 2015 to discuss issues and challenges surround...
RIYADH: The National Committee for Contractors (NCC) at the Council of Saudi Chambers (CSC) and representatives from the Ministry of Labor denied on Sunday delays in releasing SR2,400 in compensation to contractors once the criteria have been finaliz...
MAKKAH: Being at the front of the House of God and the peace and tranquility in the Grand Mosque are feelings that cannot be described, said Egyptian pilgrim Abdul Rahman Mustafa.The Umrah pilgrim appeared to be very happy and content. “Thank God, I...
DAMMAM: Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH) President Prince Sultan bin Salman and Eastern Province Gov. Prince Saud bin Naif will jointly sponsor the 3rd Saudi Conventions and Exhibitions Forum (Saudicef), scheduled for Nov. 8...
RIYADH: Every year, Saudis prepare for Eid Al-Fitr festivities with great joy and excitement. For children it is both fun and new clothes, which parents buy for them.With ten days to go until Eid Al-Fitr, shoppers were making a beeline to malls and o...
JEDDAH: Saudi scholarship students in the US enjoy a good record of complying with the laws of that country, and not a single student has been identified for his/her involvement in terror activity, Mohammed Al-Issa, cultural attaché in the US, has sa...

Stay Connected

Facebook