Though her parents were non-Muslims, they never tried to hold her back or prevent her conversion.
A 21-year-old woman who was born a Christian memorized the Holy Quran in full and is now representing Russia at the Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Int'l Holy Quran Competition, KTimes reported.
Elena Dmitrienko said: "I converted to Islam six years ago when I was 15, but my Christian father and Tatar mother have not yet."
Talking about her journey with Islam, Dmitrienko said she used to study in a private school where most students were Muslims. "I was inspired by their noble ethics, lifestyle, and dedication to their religion.
"I moved to the Zayed bin Thabit Quran study center where I learnt the Quran at the hand of competent teachers."
Though her parents were non-Muslims, they never tried to hold her back or prevent her conversion. "They were affected by the thorough change in my way of talking and dealing with them, and even encouraged me to memorize the Quran in full."
Dmitrienko's journey with the Quran started four years ago. "I managed to learn the Quran by heart a year ago with the help of my non-Muslim parents who are following me now on TV," she said.
Wishing she would be able to rank first and win the big prize, she said it would be the biggest prize in her life. "The competition is perfectly organized, and it is a good chance to meet this big number of contestants from across the globe."
So far, up to 51 out of 72 contestants have sat the final test of the competition for female memorisers being held at the Dubai Cultural and Scientific Association, Al Mamzar.