By Charlene Muhammad CHARLENEM
DETROIT–Over 50 inmates at the Ryan Detroit Re-entry Center received a message on the fulfillment of prophecy and unity as part of their celebration of the 23rd Anniversary of the Million Man March and Holy Day of Atonement.
Abdullah Muhammad, the Nation of Islam’s Student National Prison Reform Minister, and Abdul Rahman Muhammad, volunteer for Mosque No. 1 serving inmates at the Ryan Detroit Re-entry Center, spoke to the men on October 13. The keynote address marked Minister Abdullah Muhammad’s third visit to the facility.
“The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan wants you brothers to know that he loves you,” he told the men, as he explained the difference between prophecy and fulfillment. “We are the only people who were in bondage 400 years,” he stated.
He further expressed that God said to Moses, “I’m making you a God to Pharaoh”. Then Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad went on to say that there is no one outside of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and Minister Louis Farrakhan teaching that God is a man. His message was well received by the audience.
“The main thing that I wanted to communicate is the difference between prophecy and fulfillment, and I wanted to show them themselves and how they are in prison where, unfortunately, prophecy said they would be,” explained Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad.
The two-and-a-half-hour-long ceremony themed, “The Holy Day of Atonement: We Must First Be Brothers,” focused on conflict resolution. Speakers included Darren X, Pastor Daryl Woods, facilitator of the Youth Deterrent Program, and “Brother Sekou,” Grand Sheik of the Moorish Science Temple of America.
Members of Arab, Sunni, Moorish Temple of America and Christian communities were among the inmates that attended the program. Twelve of them are considered members of the Nation of Islam Study Group. That number fluctuates between 12-22 because Ryan is considered a short-stop prison, meaning the bulk of inmates will be returning home within 90 days, according to Abdul Rahman Muhammad.
However, the prison has a few serving life sentences, such as Michael 2X, who organized the Holy Day of Atonement activity and Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad’s visit.
To get his message across, he recited examples from scriptures, such as Isaiah 42, which says “they are all of them snared in holes and held in prisons as a prey.”
“I asked them what’s a snare? And they said, ‘A trap.’ I asked them do traps set themselves, and they said, ‘No!’ So, I said, so when Minister Farrakhan speaks of a conspiracy to herd us into prison, then the laws that they pass holds us as a prey in prison, and even your language bears witness to the prophecy,” Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad continued.
He broke down how a snare is also that which entices. He painted a vivid picture of how people in authority use media to showcase rappers and others with all material extravagances. He also explained to the men how crack cocaine is a snare, and how their calling the place dealers sell from a “trap house”, is language of the prophecy.
“You said the snare was a trap, and now you’re out here trapping, and now you’re a prey in prison,” he told the men.
Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad shared that the inmates’ feedback signaled the significance of the message was on time. One inmate stated, “Oh!” shared Student Min. Abdullah. “It was really funny, because it was like a delayed reaction and it donned on him what had been said to him. The message is on time, because number one, I don’t think anybody showed them fulfilling prophecy,” Student Min. Abdullah continued as he chuckled.
He further outlined Bible scripture and shared how everyone is fulfilling the prophecy at the time that was pre-written, and told the men how blessed he is to be commissioned to go behind the walls, and direct them to the servant scriptures say to behold. “That’s the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan,” he declared.
“The inmates applauded. They bore witness to the truth,” exclaimed Leonard Omarr Muhammad, who accompanied Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad and Brother Abdul Rahman Muhammad to the facility.
“I’m only 19 years old and I go home in about three weeks. I wish Mr. Muhammad lived in Detroit,” stated Maurice Smith.
“I regret that I didn’t get a chance to go to the Million Man March 23 years ago, but I’m glad that I came to this program. The brothers gave me a lot to think about, and I go home November 2018. Ninety-five percent of those who attended the program will be home in the next six months,” said L. Cox.
Larry Smith expressed, “I felt like Mr. Muhammad was talking directly to me specifically. I’m 65 years old and I’ve been locked up for 43 years and even though I’m a Christian, I know that God speaks through man. Thank you, Minister Farrakhan, for sending these brothers to see about us. We love you, brother.”
“The Teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad are walking off the pages with fulfillment,” said Abdul Rahman Muhammad. He shared that Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad’s message in part was to get them to see that their being in prison was part of their journey, and if they accept God in their life, then it will bring them that peace and understanding of why they’re in that situation.
What also resonated with Abdul Rahman Muhammad was Student Min. Abdullah Muhammad’s poignant reminder from Min. Farrakhan, “You say you love whom you’ve never seen, but you hate your brother, who you see every day, and the Honorable Elijah Muhammad said that every time you look into the face of a Black man, you’re looking at God, and he was connecting us first to knowing who God is and getting us to accept one another as brothers,” he stated.
The energy was very strong, according to Abdul Rahman Muhammad. “It was like a relief type of energy, to know that God has forgiven them, and God has taught them, and God has accepted us, regardless to what we have committed. There was a relief in the room, like an atonement, like somebody said, ‘You’ve been pardoned!’ The brothers left out of there feeling relieved and feeling energized to move forward with their challenges,” he added.
Along with the beautiful experience, some were able to watch Min. Farrakhan’s message via webcast, according to Leonard Omarr Muhammad. He noted a few of the participants were just babies or unborn during the Million Man March.
“Because the NOI study group members are definitely keeping the spirit alive, it was like a miracle effect of the Million Man March,” he stated.
Some of the inmates said they were most struck by the peace, harmony and calm over the two million Black men gathered and how early they filled the ground of the mall at 3-4 a.m. that morning, October 16, 1995, Leonard Omarr Muhammad continued.
“They were pretty familiar with the Eight Steps of Atonement. We know that a lot of issues that we have amongst us comes from a lack of conflict resolution and keeping it in our memory and committing to practice the eight steps could literally be, it is the solution really, to our conflicts,” Leonard Omarr Muhammad added.