Ayesha Ahmad, The Netherlands
New Ahmadi and student members of Lajna Imaillah, the Netherlands meet Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa through a virtual Mulaqat
A group of new convert and student members of Lajna Imaillah, the Netherlands gathered in the Bait-ul-Noor complex in the leafy Dutch town of Nunspeet on the morning of Sunday, 23 August 2020. The atmosphere was laden with excitement as these fortunate members anxiously waited for the blessed historic event that they were about to be part of.
After a particularly dry and warm spell for the past few weeks, the skies had opened up and it had been raining hard for the best part of the past 24 hours, but nothing could dampen the excitement of these very fortunate Lajna members.
These members of Lajna Imaillah had been part of a group who were scheduled to have travelled to the United Kingdom in April this year for a mulaqat with Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V, may Allah be his Helper. Preparations had been made, transport booked and the schedule of the upcoming trip had been planned in great detail. Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 restrictions, the world came to a standstill and this much-anticipated trip was cancelled.
The Lajna members were devastated for not being able to meet their beloved Imamaa as they had hoped to. But as members of the community of the Imamas of the age, we have become accustomed to witnessing the immense blessings of Allah and the love of Khilafat shower upon His loved ones in remarkable ways.
At the end of June, Attiya Aslam Sahiba, Sadr Lajna Imaillah the Netherlands received a phone call from the office of the private secretary to Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa informing her of the possibility of holding an online mulaqat with Huzooraa with the group of Lajna who were due to visit London earlier this year. She was asked to prepare and send a plan for this mulaqat in accordance with local government guidelines and social distancing regulations.
Sadr Sahiba was pleasantly surprised, but naturally anxious about the arrangements. Together with her amila members, a detailed proposed plan for a virtual mulaqat was outlined and sent for approval to Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa.
The plan was graciously approved and Huzooraa granted two mulaqats: the first was a virtual meeting with Sadr Sahiba and members of her amila on 22 August 2020 and the second was to be an online mulaqat with student members of Lajna along with new convert Lajna members on 23 August 2020.
The preparations for these two meetings took several weeks. Amir Sahib was requested to provide assistance with the audio and visual side of the preparations and communication with MTA International.
The general secretary’s team, under Qayyum Muzaffar Sahiba, consisted of Jaweria Altaf and Maria Hassan, who organised the preparations for the mulaqats. This included informing and inviting the students and arranging the set up in the Lajna hall on both days. Secretary Nau Mubaiyat, Hannan Bourik Sahiba took care of the arrangements and planning for the new convert Lajna. The secretary of the Audio and Visual Department, Nasra Chaudhary Sahiba managed the cameras on both days along with her team members: Qudsia Basit Sahiba, Noureen Raza Sahiba, Sofia Malahat Bhatti Sahiba and Sumaira Ibraheem Sahiba. Abida Ahsan Sahiba and Dr Noor-e-Sehar Compier Sahiba oversaw simultaneous translations in Dutch via headsets. May Allah bless all the duty holders who served during these two blessed days.
A proposed programme for the online mulaqat was sent to Huzooraa along with the plan of how students and Nau Mubaiyat would be seated. Shamim Mazhar Sahiba, Vice President of Lajna Imaillah the Netherlands was responsible for the selection and preparation of tilawat and poem recitations.
Due care was taken to place the seats in the hall at the distance required by the Dutch health authorities and masks and gloves were provided as well.
As these fortunate members of Lajna the Netherlands filed into the hall and took their seats, the MTA team did their final camera and sound checks and issued last-minute instructions. Sadr Sahiba reminded the audience of the sheer blessings and honour, which Allah had bestowed on them and to spend this blessed time in prayer and the remembrance of Allah.
This group consisted of five new converts and four converts who had accepted Ahmadiyyat within the last seven years along with 22 student Lajna members.
At exactly 13:41, the connection went live, and we witnessed the blessed countenance of Hazat Khalifatul Masih Vaa on the two screens in the hall. It was a truly blessed and surreal experience.
The programme began with the recitation of the Holy Quran and its Dutch translation by Amina Ahmad Sahiba, a new convert Lajna of Kurdish origin. Noureen Raza Sahiba presented the Urdu translation of the tilawat. Some verses of a poem by the Promised Messiah, peace be upon him, were then recited in Urdu by sisters Shafia Mahmood Sahiba and Amatul Noor Mahmood Sahiba, followed by a Dutch poem beautifully recited by our new Ahmadi Dutch sister, Agnes Sterk Sahiba who had accepted Islam Ahmadiyyat straight after beloved Huzoor’s visit to the Netherlands just under a year ago.
A question and answer session then followed where a variety of questions on different topics were asked and Huzooraa kindly gave detailed answers to them. These included questions about Arab-Israel relations, company at school, interpretations of dreams, rights of transgender, homosexuality, nanotechnology, taqdir, birthdays, the situation of Ahmadis in Pakistan, tabligh, marriage and many more topics. Alhamdolillah, our beloved Imamaa took the time to answer each question in great depth.
Virtual meeting with Majlis-e-Amila Lajna Imaillah the Netherlands
On 22 August 2020, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa presided over a virtual meeting with the national Lajna Amila members of the Netherlands. This meeting began with silent prayer led by Huzooraa at 13:45.
Huzooraa graciously spoke to each member of Majlis-e-Amila and Sadr Sahiba and gave them the opportunity to ask questions regarding their respective departments.
A week prior to our mulaqat, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community had witnessed the very first virtual mulaqat with Huzooraa and members of the Canadian Jamaat, but by the grace of Allah, Lajna Imailla the Netherlands were blessed to have been the first to have this honour from amongst all European nations, alhamdolillah.
Attia Aslam Sahiba, National Sadr Lajna Imaillah the Netherlands expressed her emotions on these two blessed meetings with Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa in these words:
“During the lockdown, I often thought about the moment when Lajna would meet again in the mosque and how nice that moment would be, to see my sisters again. With the blessings of Allah, our beloved Huzooraa made it possible to reunite in the mosque for an online mulaqat. Due to technology, we were able to see and speak to our beloved Huzooraa. He gave precious advice to the national amila. May Allah enable us to implement Huzoor’saa advice. Amin. It was a very blessed weekend. Lajna Imaillah the Netherlands had two opportunities for online mulaqats with our beloved Huzooraa. We have personally experienced the love of the Khalifa for the Jamaat, alhamdolillah. May Allah give our beloved Huzooraa a long and healthy life. May Allah always be his Helper. May Allah give the Jamaat success. Amin.”
Impressions from new convert Lajna members
Agnes Sterk Sahiba:
“Thank you for the possibility to organise this meeting with respected Huzooraa. I am happy to have been able to experience this and happy to hear the answers from Huzooraa. His calmness, support, sense of humour is very inspiring to me…”
Hiwi Bamerny Sahiba and Amina Ahmed Sahiba:
“I am very happy. Everything went well, alhamdolillah. I got to ask my question and received a beautiful answer. I really want to thank God for this blessing and insha-Allah, many more. Jazakallah”
Sabria Majid Sahiba:
“I am Sabria, a Kurdish lady from Almere Jamaat. This meeting was very interesting. I have heard many questions, beautiful questions with dear and beautiful answers from Huzooraa. I was here with my daughter, mother, sister, cousin and friend. Many thanks to Huzooraa for his precious time.”
Our hearts are filled with immense gratitude to the Almighty, Who gave us these two blessed opportunities. May Allah grant Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa with a very long and healthy life and may we, humble members of Lajna Imaillah the Netherlands, always remain loyal and obedient to the institution of Khilafat. Amin.