CA: Young Imam Takes First Spiritual Journey to Mecca

Swathed in two white sheets, Imam Abdurrahman Anwar supplicated to God on holy ground.

The 23-year-old Belmont resident asked for blessings and forgiveness of his sins as he slowly circled the Kaa'ba, a black cube, at the Al-Haram Mosque.

It is believed to be the holiest place in Islam.

"I basically asked for everything," said Anwar, who is the imam for the Muslim Community Association of the Peninsula in Belmont. "Everything that came to mind, not for things for myself, but for the community, all Muslims, and mankind. I asked for peace."

His spiritual journey took place Dec. 6-26. Anwar was one of more than 2.5 million Muslims to experience hajj and undergo the rigorous process of atonement.

For years, Anwar has listened to countless stories from family members and friends about their trek to Mecca so he knew his journey would start something special.

It was Anwar's first time experiencing the pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia. He went with his brother, mother, sister and 10 other people from San Mateo County.


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