Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Australia: ‘Best weapon we have is a prayer’ | 3000 to converge for western Sydney peace symposium


Preparations for one of Australia’s largest and longest-running Muslim conventions, Jalsa Salana, are well underway in anticipation for what event organisers hope will be the biggest gathering yet.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | AU Desk
Source/Credit: SBS News
By Georgina Cooke | December 27, 2016

Hosted by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association Australia, the 32nd annual convention is set to run over three days in Marsden Park in Sydney’s west.

Starting on December 28, the gathering will provide the opportunity for the minority religious sect to congregate and celebrate their religion freely. However the event is not restricted to Ahmadiyya Muslims alone.

“We welcome non-members with open arms because this event is not only for our own members’ spiritual enhancement … or to meet new members,” Jalsa Salana spokesman Aqeel Ibraheem told SBS.

“Our focus, especially in the last seven to eight years, has shifted because of IS, and all the media - a lot of incidents have happened.”
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"Our doors and our hearts are always open for our fellow countrymen and we wholeheartedly invite all those who seek knowledge and understanding of Islam and Ahmadiyya," the National President of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Australia, Mr. I. H. Kauser, said in a statement.

The opportunity to converge on Baitul Huda Mosque in December is a significant one.

"It’s a unique Islamic event through which we hope to answer the various questions and controversies often associated with Islam," Mr Kauser said.

"Thousands of Ahmadiyya Muslims will be gathering to gain spirituality, understanding, peace and unity."

Head of National External Relations for the event, Ramzan Sharif, said the "main purpose is revitalisation for the young and old, men and women".

"It has become part of the community's tradition ... it's got a purpose to it, it's not an ordinary gathering, it's extraordinary. The spiritual and moral advancement of the community is a part of the program," he said.

It is also a time members and respected Imams can come together to clarify the Prophet’s teachings, which is especially important for younger members of the faith, Mr Ibraheem said. Many of them often only hear or learn about their religion through the media.

“This year they felt their holidays were very exciting and [that] they met a lot of new people - they got to meet a lot of young Imams,” Mr Ibraheem said.

“When they are mixing with these young Imams, they open up on issues which they were too afraid to ask before.”

Mr Ibraheem shared with SBS the story of one young Ahmadiyya who was left feeling confused after a schoolmate queried him as to why he was not helping his brothers and sisters in the Middle East while he was in Australia ‘enjoying life’.

The Imam told the boy: 'The best weapon we have is a prayer - you’re not in a war here.'

“The Koran says that you need to follow those in authority, for example, the [Australian] government; ‘the law of the land’.

“He was amazed ... he actually thought it would never be that clearly written in the Koran."

Notable speakers and guests at this year's Jalsa Salana include Azhar Hanif, the National Vice President of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Liberal member of the NSW Legislative Council David Clarke, Director of the Centre for Interfaith and Cultural Dialogue and Griffith University Dr Brian Adams, Leader of the Christian Democratic Party Fred Nile and the Mayor of Blacktown Stephen Bali.




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1 comment:

  1. there are only prayers sheild us against ugly mullan,mullan who are sharabi,rashi,acting on non islamic tituals

    ReplyDelete

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