An American millionaire, Mark Shaffer declared his Islam in Saudi Arabia on Saturday, 17th October 2009. Mark was at that time on a holiday in Saudi Arabia to visit some famous cities like Riyadh, Abha and Jeddah for 10 days.Mark is a well-known millionaire and also a practiced lawyer in Los Angeles, specializing in cases of civil laws. The last big case he handled was the case of the famous American pop singer, Michael Jackson, a week before he passed away.
A tourist guide who accompanied Mark for 10 days in Saudi Arabia, Dhawi Ben Nashir told: Since he set foot for the first time in Saudi Arabia, Mark already started to ask question about Islam and Solat. As soon as he arrived in Saudi, Mark stayed in Riyadh for two days. While in Riyadh, Mark was very interested in Islam. After moving to Najran, we went to Abha and Al-Ula. There, his fascination on Islam grew more obvious, especially the time when we ventured out into the desert.
Mark was amazed to see three Saudi youths who were in our group in Al-Ula, performing solat in the expanse of the very wide desert. A very fantastic panorama indeed.
After two days in Al-Ula, we went to Al-Juf. As soon as we arrived in Al-Juf, Mark asked if I could get him some books on Islam. I then obtained some books on Islam for him. Mark read all those books. The next morning, he asked me to teach him how to perform solat. I then taught him how to pray and take wudhu (ablution). Then, he joined me and performed solat beside me.
After solat, Mark told me that he felt peace in his soul. On Thursday afternoon, we left Al-Ula heading for Jeddah. He looked very serious throughout the journey reading those books about Islam. On Friday morning, we visited the old town of Jeddah. Before the time for the Friday prayer approached, we went back to the hotel and I excused myself to go for the Friday prayer. Then, Mark told me: I would like to join you for the Friday prayer so that I can witness myself how the Friday prayer is like. So I answered: welcome…
We then went to a masjid which was not far from the hotel where we stayed in Jeddah. Since we were quite late, I and many other jamaah had to pray outside, as the number of jamaah was overflowing. I could see Mark observing the jamaah, especially after the Friday prayer was completed, when everybody was shaking hands and embracing each other with radiant and happy faces. Mark was very impressed with what he saw.