Saturday, 11 January 2014

One in every 10 babies in England is Muslim: Census

London: Almost one in every 10 babies and toddlers in England and Wales is Muslim, according to new analysis of census figures published, illustrating the growth of the minority community.

Some 317,952 children aged under five, or 9.1 percent, were registered as being Muslim in the 2011 census, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show.

As a measure of how the religious demographics of England and Wales are changing, the figure is nearly double the 4.8 percent of the whole population who are Muslim, while fewer than one in 200 people aged over 85 are Muslim.

It is also an 80 percent increase on the 176,264 Muslim under-fives recorded in the 2001 census.

“It certainly is a startling figure,” David Coleman, professor of demography at Oxford University, told The Times newspaper on Friday.

“Continuing immigration from Pakistan, Bangladesh and India has been added to by new immigration from African countries and from the Middle East.

“Birth rates of Muslims of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin remain quite high, although falling. There seem to be very low levels of falling away from religion among Muslims.”

Muslims have the youngest age profile of the main religious groups. Nearly half of Muslims (48 percent) were aged under 25 (1.3 million).

The figures showed that Christianity remains by far the most common religion registered for babies in England and Wales, at more than 1.5 million, or 43.7 percent.

Nearly as many parents listed their children under five as having no religion — the answer given for nearly 1.2 million (34.1 percent).

The next most common religions registered for British toddlers after Christianity and Islam were Hinduism at 55,869 (1.6 percent), Sikhism at 28,380 (0.8 percent), Judaism at 18,221 (0.5 percent) and Buddhism at 9,026 (0.3 percent).

Ibrahim Mogra, assistant secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain umbrella group, said the number of Muslim babies reflected the confidence of the community.

“It’s not about Britain becoming a Muslim country but about Britain enabling the practice of Islam, which gives confidence to the vast majority of Muslims,” he told The Times.

Thirteen children aged under five were being raised in witchcraft, while 121 had heavy metal as their stated religion. Some 4,700 were listed as “Jedi knight”, the statistics showed.

ONS figures showed that Mohammed was the most popular name for newborn baby boys in England and Wales in 2009, though 12 different spellings of that name meant that Oliver officially topped the chart. 

Friday, 10 January 2014

American singer Jennifer Grout embraced Islam

American singer Jennifer Grout, who fascinated the Arab world after reaching the final three of the talent competition “Arabs Got Talent” has reportedly reverted to Islam during her stay in Morocco to study Arabic language, Morocco World News reports.

“Do you know how to say Shahada in Islam?” the man asked Jennifer in a video posted on YouTube on Sunday, January 5.

Jennifer replied by reciting the shahada, or declaration of faith, saying, “there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His prophet.”

According to, in the video, which could not be verified from other sources, Jennifer appeared with a young man, allegedly her fiancé, and another man in an atmosphere of friendliness and tolerance.

“In Islam, we pray. Do you know how to pray,” the man asked her.

The young man accompanying Jennifer intervened to say that Jennifer knows many facts about Islam.

“She knows what you are talking about,” he told the man.

The man went on to ask her if she memorized some Qur’anic verses and Jennifer said yes.

She then began to recite Al Fatiha Surah in a beautiful voice.

It appears that Jinnifer has no difficulty whatsoever understanding the Amazigh man who posed the questions in Tamazight.

Grout, a 23-year-old a singer originally from Boston, has come to Morocco to learn both the Amazigh language and Moroccan Arabic.