Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih Vaa graced the inauguration reception of Masroor Mosque, South Virginia, USA on the evening of Saturday, 3 November.
The property where Masroor Mosque is now situated was first built as a church around ten years ago. The Ahmadiyya Jamaat purchased this land in November 2017.
The mosque is on a stretch of 17 acres of land and is meant to serve the nearly 1,000 Ahmadis who live in the region, as well as a beacon of light for all residents in the area.
The highlight of the reception was the address delivered by Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa.
After explaining how the true Islam, the Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa inculcated living harmoniously with fellow beings and to promote peace and tolerance in the world, Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa explained that Islam had to defend itself in the early days as it was facing not an attack on Islam, but an attack on religion and faith. To safeguard not only Islam, but the beliefs of other religions, Muslims had to resort to self-defence.
Addressing the guests who came to attend the reception, Huzooraa said:
“Certainly, I hope and expect that in your interaction with Ahmadi Muslims in the past, you will only have felt a spirit of love and respect from them towards you. Now this mosque has been officially opened. This spirit will only increase, and our message of peace and humanity will reverberate ever louder and echo in all directions. The local Ahmadi Muslims will intensify their efforts to fulfil the rights of neighbours of this mosque.”
Huzooraa further added:
“I should clarify that our neighbours are not only those who live close to the mosque or close to the homes of Ahmadi Muslims, rather the circle of neighbours, according to the Holy Quran, spreads much further afield and includes a person’s colleagues, subordinates, travel companions and many other people besides.”
Huzooraa then prayed that the local Ahmadi Muslims lived up to what Huzooraa had said and that may they exercise the standards expected of Muslims.
Reminding the congregation of the immense responsibility that today lies on not just believers in faith, but humans generally and this generation specifically, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa prayed:
“From the depth of my heart, I pray that after we have departed this world, our children and future generations remember us with love and affection. May they affirm that their elders spared no effort to foster a spirit of love, peace and brotherhood amongst mankind, and to leave behind a peaceful and enlightened world. Surely, the alternative does not bear thinking about.”
The event concluded with silent prayer led by Huzooraa after which dinner was served.
Prior to Huzoor’s keynote address, a few dignitaries had the chance to speak before the congregation.
Gerry Connolly, member of the United States Congress for Virginia’s 11th district and co-author of the House Resolution welcoming Huzoor to the United States, said:
“We welcome you in our midst. We celebrate your spiritual legacy and what it brings to our community. It makes us better too.”
Dr Katrina Lantos Swett, President of the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights & Justice and former chair of United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, said:
“I have had the wonderful opportunity of being with His Holiness on, I think now, four or five occasions over the last few years. And whenever I am in his presence, I feel the spirit of wisdom, of reconciliation, of love and of tolerance that he brings.
Hala Ayala, member of the Virginia House of Delegates who was representing the 51st district of Virginia, which includes Masroor Mosque, presented Huzooraa a certificate of recognition on behalf of the Governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam.