Hazrat Amirul Momineen, Khalifatul Masih Vaa arrived at the premises of the new mosque in Southall, West London and unveiled the plaque, officially opening the mosque, prior to the Maghrib and Isha prayers.
At around 5:45pm, Huzooraa led the local Ahmadis and the many guests who had gathered for the auspicious occasion in Maghrib and Isha prayers.
Immediately after the prayers, Huzooraa addressed the local Jamaat members in the mosque.
Following the recitation of Surah al-Baqarah, chapter 2, verses 128 to 130 and its translation, Rafiq Ahmad Hayat Sahib, Amir Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya UK gave a brief overview of the Southall Jamaat and the mosque. He also spoke on the great sacrifices of the local Ahmadis for constructing this mosque.
Following Tashahud and Ta‘awuz, Huzooraa said that it was a sign of the mercy of Allah that He had enabled the Southall Jamaat to establish this mosque, after being established in Southall for around 60 years.
Huzooraa then went on to talk about the responsibilities of the local Ahmadis in showing the true teachings of Islam through their actions and proving to others that Islam is a religion of love and compassion, thus proving its need to be propagated in the world.
Huzooraa said that one of the purposes of bullding mosques is to establish tawhid [the unity of God]. To achieve this, we must ensure that the rights of Allah are being fulfilled, that is His worship, and also the rights of mankind.
The best way to show the true and beautiful teachings of Islam to the world is to follow the teachings of the Promised Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas, who was the most devoted servant of Islam and the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa.
Huzooraa prayed that Allah may enable all the Ahmadis in the area to follow these teachings and show the best possible example to the local populace.
Huzoor’s speech to the local Ahmadis was followed by dua.
Thereafter, Huzooraa commenced to the formal reception that was held at the premises of Villiers High School, situated across the road from the mosque.
The formal reception for the inauguration of Darus Salaam Mosque commenced around 7pm.
The event began with the recitation of verses 26 and 27 of Surah Yunus by Usama Siam Sahib, followed by its translation by Adeel Minhas Sahib.
Sohail Qureshi Sahib, the regional president, then welcomed the guests and introduced the community. In his talk, he reassured the local populace that this new Ahmadiyya mosque would be a positive addition to the rich, diverse local culture.
Seema Malhotra, Member of Parliament for Feltham and Heston, was then invited to the podium. In her talk, she commended the achievements of the Ahmadiyya community and spoke of her relationship with the mosque and the community.
Thereafter, Virendra Sharma, Member of Parliament for Ealing Southall took to the stage and spoke on the pride he took in this mosque being established in his constituency.
While other dignitaries were also present, whose participation was acknowledged, Mr Sharma’s talk was followed by Hazrat Amirul Momineen’saa address.
Following Tashahud and Ta‘awuz, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said that previously, the local Jamaat did not have a mosque and a mission house was used for praying. Huzooraa said that it was a blessing of Allah that this mosque was able to be constructed.
Huzooraa said that while Southall has a large Asian population, the Ahmadiyya Community is relatively small. If we look at Southall’s history, there is a history of racial tensions and rioting, however the Southall community has been an excellent example of racial diversity.
Thus, after expressing gratitude to Allah the Almighty, Huzooraa said that it was incumbent upon us to thank the local population, whether they be Sikh, Hindu or belonging to any other group.
Huzooraa carried on by saying that a fundamental teaching of Islam is that there should be mutual respect and understanding, the perfect example of which was presented by the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa.
Huzooraa carried on by explaining how, in the early period of Islam, the Holy Prophetsa dealt with everyone equally, regardless of their faith group. Referring to the covenant of Medina, Huzooraa said, “The founder of Islam always abided by the terms of the covenant and instructed the Muslims to do the same. Not once did he abuse his authority or violate the terms in any way.”
Huzooraa went on to quote the Holy Quran in which it says that the basic purpose of man’s existence on earth is the worship of Allah. Huzooraa explained that alongside this, it should be clear that Allah does not require our worship and that His worship can only truly be achieved when the worshipper strives to better themselves.
Huzooraa gave the example of the Holy Quran, wherein God is called Rabb, that is the Provider and Sustainer of all mankind, as well as being the Gracious and Merciful. There are many other similar attributes of Allah that Muslims believe in. Thus, Muslims are instructed to look after the wellbeing of their fellow humans.
Huzooraa said that it is the belief of Ahmadis that only that person who is considerate of their fellow beings can be a true worshipper of Allah.
Huzooraa explained that it should be clear that it is the religious duty of every Muslim to serve mankind. “To alleviate the physical and mental suffering of mankind is part of our faith.”
Huzooraa carried on by saying that the Jamaat has opened many hospitals and schools across the developing world. Clinics are also being established in many remote places of the world. Huzooraa said that whilst mosques are built for the worship of Allah, the service of mankind remains a primary responsibility of members of the Jamaat. Love and compassion should be the primary goal of every true Ahmadi Muslim and it is for this reason that the words, “Love for all; Hatred for none” make the motto of the community. Huzooraa explained that this motto is not used to impress others, rather it is something that all Ahmadis must live by.
Huzooraa said that with the construction of this mosque, it is his hope that the Ahmadis show the true, positive reflection of Islam.
Huzooraa prayed that all Ahmadis living in the area lived up to the standards as mentioned by him in his talk and that the locals would accept our hand of friendship that shall forever remain extended. He prayed that may we focus on those things that unite us and that Southall be blessed.
Towards the end, Huzooraa said, “I pray with all my heart that this mosque proves to be a beacon of light” and a symbol of peace and unity.
Huzooraa then thanked the guests for joining the Ahmadiyya Community on this auspicious occasion.
About the mosque
The Southall Jamaat was established in 1961 and the missionary was appointed to the area in 1975.
In 1980, a building was purchased and refurbished at 11 Boyd Avenue, Southall for approximately £52,000. Hazrat Hafiz Mirza Nasir Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IIIrh inaugurated this mission house, when only around 40 families lived in the area, and in the same year, he named it Darus Salaam, meaning “The Abode of Peace”.
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IVrh visited the mission house in 1982 and encouraged the local Ahmadis to build a mosque.
In July 2017, the old premises was demolished, with excavation and digging commencing in 2017.
On 8 October 2017, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih Vaa laid the foundation stone of the Darus Salaam Mosque.
By August 2019, the construction of the mosque was completed, with carpet and underfloor heating system being installed.
The main prayer hall can accommodate 220 people, with a total capacity of 700 people.