Nadia Mahmood, Sadr Lajna Imaillah Canada
On 19 November 2023, Lajna Imaillah Canada brought together women of various faiths for a dialogue on the topic of “Relevance of My Holy Book in Today’s Society.” The event, held at the Aiwan-e-Tahir in Vaughan, Ontario, drew together 242 women, 60 of whom were non-Ahmadi.
The symposium began with a recitation from the Holy Quran, followed by a short welcome and a clip of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa.
Then, speakers from each of the five major world religions – Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, and Sikhism – got to share how the teachings of their Holy Book may apply today. Each speaker shared enlightening facts, and the entire symposium led to a single conclusion – that all of our faiths have so much more in common than what separates them, and this should bring us together.
As guests walked into Aiwan-e-Tahir, they were greeted by the registration team, who gave out complementary books for them to take home. The Aiwan-e-Tahir was decorated with booths on various Jamaat initiatives, such as MTA and The Review of Religions, and educational booths on things such as the role of women in Islam and Islamic calligraphy.
Following the individual speeches from each faith, guests had the chance to send their questions to the main stage for a question-and-answer session. Concluding remarks were given by my humble self, where I drew everyone’s attention to remember that God Almighty has created humanity as one. To conclude the event, guests took part in a silent prayer.
Many visitors shared how interfaith dialogue – a hallmark of Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya – is a source of education for them. They get to hear from people of various faiths first-hand and leave behind their own biases. One guest stated how emotional she felt, seeing everyone express mutual respect and care for each other’s perspectives.