Sabahuzafar, Missionary New Zealand
To spread the message of Islam and remove misconceptions amongst the public, Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya New Zealand has recently been continuing its Discover Islam campaign, visiting various towns and cities across the country.
The Discover Islam team first visited Tauranga, a coastal city in New Zealand’s Bay of Plenty region, on 29 October 2020. Here, they carried out numerous meetings as part of the #MeetYourMuslimNeighbourNZ initiative, which provides people with the opportunity to meet a Muslim and ask questions about Islam. The team met numerous local politicians and community leaders, including the Hon Jan Tinnetti MP (Minister of Internal Affairs, Minister for Women and Associate Minister for Education) and the President of the Tauranga Interfaith Council, Rev John Hebenton.
In addition to this, the Discover Islam campaign also visited the Waikato region, travelling to Otorohonga on 17 December 2020 and Huntly on the 14 January 2021 to conduct #MeetYourMuslimNeighbourNZ campaign.
In Otorohonga, the team held an Islam Table Talk session with local council members in the offices of the Otorohonga District Council and extended an invitation to the Mayor, Max Baxter, who later joined in at our #MeetYourMuslimNeighbourNZ.
One interesting incident in Otorohonga was when the team were visited by a lady who brought several of her children and grandchildren to visit the Discover Islam team. She explained she had seen a post on social media about the event and brought her family to join since she wanted to show them the campaign and do her part to help promote unity and understanding.
By the grace of Allah, the Discover Islam campaign has, thus far, been very successful in promoting a better understanding of Islam amongst the people of New Zealand and, insha-Allah, the team plans to continue with the initiative.