RasheediNobility comes as a package, charity cannot be paid by installments and princedom is not only inherited. These three simple phrases sum up what I have seen from His Royal Highness the Prince of Al-Madinah Al-Monawwara, Prince Faisal Bin Salman Al Saud on a ceremony held by an orphanage in Madinah known as ‘The Prophet’s Neighbors.’* I happened to attend the ceremony completely by chance, while I was in Saudi Arabia performing Omra, as I received an invitation from a friend from Madinah whom I had not seen for 12 years.

On the second day of my visit, he accompanied me to the Prophet’s Neighbors Orphanage where I was amazed by the type and number of people attending the ceremony, including Prince Faisal and a huge number of Saudi footballers, like Yasser Al-Qahtani, Mohammed Al-Shalhoub and Nayef Azzazi, and also Madinah dignitaries. I learned that the ceremony was not to be covered by the media, but handled it and dealt with the orphans who surrounded him and blew all theories about official protocol for people in similar positions.

He forgot all about everybody except the kids, carrying some of them, talking to some and listening to others. I honestly thought that would not last more than two minutes, take some photos and then go on to talk with officials and dignitaries. Well, I could not be more wrong as Prince Faisal stayed with the kids for over an hour, listening to them and playing with them.

I also learned that Al-Hilal and Al-Nasr star footballers attended the ceremony upon instructions from the official who is also the head of the Takaful Charity Organization. The following day, knowing that is the head of the most important Arab media establishment, that he is the son of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and that he is the Madinah prince, I expected news about the ceremony would be all over the press and the media. I did search and found two small stories, one from a political newspaper, the other, a sports one, which only focused on the presence of the footballers.

Inquiring from my friend about it, he told me that he did not want media coverage and that the photos published about the ceremony were leaked by the players themselves on their social media accounts through a campaign they hashtagged ‘Think About Us for Orphans’ Benefit’ through which they said that the society included 6,000 members sponsoring orphans with him providing the largest contribution to the donations. Nevertheless, he decided to keep a low profile and preferred focusing the coverage on the campaign rather on his visit, person or position! l The Prophet (PBUH) said, “I will be like this in Jannah with the person who takes care of an orphan.” The Prophet (PBUH) raised his forefinger and middle finger to illustrate how close and neighborly he would be with those people and hence, the charity’s name.

—Translated by Kuwait Times

By Tha’ar Al-Rasheedi