Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Day 10 - Beijing, China

The Tenth Day (Wednesday, September 10)

Muslims in the ancient capital of China

Beijing is the capital of the People’s Republic of China. The city was founded more than 3,000 years ago, and was regarded as the capital of China for over 850 years.

The Hui People
The Hui people trace their ancestors back to Muslim traders, soldiers, and officials who came to China during the seventh through fourteenth centuries. These men settled and married local native (Han) Chinese women. The Hui have so well assimilated into the Chinese society that they are almost indistinguishable from the Han Chinese, except in dietary and religious practices. There is a wide range of devotion to Islam among the Hui. In north-eastern China, they are more liberal. There, they smoke, drink, and eat pork when away from home. Overall, the Hui are said to be among the least radical Muslims in the world.

One can find the Muslim Hui people all over the capital region, however, they tend to congregate in certain streets as well as a few towns and villages around the city. A significant Hui community lives in the Niujie Street area of central Beijing. Slightly over 11,000 Huis live in this area of 1.5 km2 around the famous Niujie Mosque, the biggest and oldest mosque in Beijing. It was built in 996 AD and was rebuilt and expanded later. It now covers 6,000 m2. Its architecture blends the beauty of both ancient Chinese palaces and Arabian mosques.

There is very little if any Christian witness to the Hui Muslims in general. There are no known believers among the Muslim Hui in Beijing.

Prayer Starters
* May God open doors for Chinese believers in the Messiah to proclaim Christ to Muslims.

* May God cause the Muslim Hui people in the Beijing area to seek the true God.

* Pray that Chinese believers can be agents of blessing and positive change for the city and the Muslim population.

Praying Times
Practicing Muslims all over the world pray memorized ritual prayers toward the city of Mecca five times per day. This is done at appointed hours which are constantly changing by a few minutes each day depending on the calendar. Here are the prayer times for Beijing today: 5:50 AM, 12:11 PM; 4:41PM ; 6:32 PM and 8:02 PM. Some people will pray an optional sixth time at 4:09 AM.

HT: 30 Days Muslim Prayer Focus

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