With cases of the current coronavirus pandemic surpassing the one million mark and closing in on two million, what was once an unpredictable Covid-19 is now turning into a reality.
The UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has been treated in intensive care at St Thomas’ Hospital following a tough battle with the illness, while thousands continue to succumb to this fateful pandemic.
The USA, which currently has the most cases of Covid-19, has seen a surge in figures in recent days, with New York bearing the brunt of it.
World leaders continue their ongoing battle with Covid-19 and are providing solutions to their countrymen and women to rid their nation of this virus.
In the midst of this, in keeping with the law of the land and gathering only a couple of people for Friday prayer, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V, may Allah be his Helper, delivered his Friday Sermon last week to the worldwide audience via MTA International.
Huzooraa continued with the series of Friday Sermons on the Badri Companionsra. However, before proceeding on this subject, talking about the global condition, Huzooraa said:
“According to the current world situation and abiding by the law the government here has implemented, Friday sermons cannot be given in front of an audience of worshippers. In accordance to what the law permits, it has been arranged today that I deliver the sermon from the mosque because whether there are people directly in front of me or not, there are still hundreds of thousands who are listening to the sermon worldwide.
“We should always strive and pray for upholding this worship [Friday Prayers]. May Allah improve the situation, get rid of this pandemic and then may the beauty of gatherings in mosques return again.”
At the end of his sermon, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa read out extracts from the writings of the Promised Messiahas:
“Once the Promised Messiahas said to Hazrat Mufti Sahibra ‘to keep houses lit with lights and in these days’ – it was the days of the plague – ‘houses should be kept very clean, clothes should also be kept clean’. The Promised Messiahas said, ‘Days are very arduous at present and the atmosphere is poisonous; cleanliness is also Sunnah [the practice of the Holy Prophetsa]. It is also written in the Holy Quran:
وَ ثِیَابکَ فَطَھِّرْ وَالرُّجْزَ فَاھْجُرْ
[“And keep thy clothes clean. And uncleanliness do thou shun.” (Ch. 74: V. 5-6)]’
“Then, at another occasion, the Promised Messiahas said, ‘Those who are seeing the plague spread with intensity in their towns and villages should not leave their areas; they should keep their houses clean and warm while also taking all essential precautions. The most important aspect is that they seek true forgiveness. By undergoing a pure transformation, they should seek peace with God Almighty. Waking up at night, they should profusely pray in Tahajud.’
“Then he [the Promised Messiahas] said, ‘It is only the true transformation of oneself that can protect from this punishment of God. And how true this is.’
“May Allah the Almighty enable every Ahmadi to pay special attention towards prayers in these days. Follow the instructions of the government as well and keep your houses clean; incense should be used and continue to spray Dettol [disinfectants] etc. which are available.
“May Allah the Almighty have grace and mercy upon everyone. In any case, pay great attention towards prayers in these days. May Allah enable everyone to do this.”
While the world has come to a halt and businesses are on a break until this battle comes to an end, under the guidance of Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa, auxiliary organisations of Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya around the world have taken measures to ensure that Ahmadis in their respective countries are kept engaged with daily online activities and are occupied in relief efforts for those fellow countrymen and women who are less able to help themselves.
Within the UK, for example, Majlis Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya has introduced many initiatives to keep the youth engaged in spiritual and educational activities. With regard to efforts to keep both Atfal and Khuddam engaged, Farhad Ahmad Sahib, Mohtamim Atfal UK, told Al Hakam:
“At this time, Huzoor-e-Anwaraa has guided that we should utilise our time productively and under the guidance of Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa, MKA is engaging Atfal and Khuddam through various online initiatives.”
Farhad Sahib told us that some of the initiatives they are running include:
- Spring Retreat: A week-long online class series where four lectures are delivered every day on Urdu, Arabic and answering allegations against Islam and finally, a class on history and religion
- Islam in 60 – Motivational videos about Islam on a daily basis
- The Atfal Show: A weekly 15-minute YouTube show, including a live quiz and videos from Atfal. This is a programme for Atfal by Atfal
- Daily Reminder: Motivational videos on a daily basis
- Golden Words: Daily videos based on quotes of Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa
- Daily AMYA Fit: Videos on how to exercise
- Daily Insights: Videos to keep Atfal motivated
- Daily Dua: A daily video to memorise prayers. Similarly, a poster is being uploaded daily too
- Khuddam and Atfal Live YouTube Workouts: At least four times a week, Khuddam and Atfal separately run their live workout sessions
- Monthly Khuddam talim tests: Online tests based on religious knowledge
- Tahir Magazine: Atfal write for their magazine about their experiences of this period of social distancing
- Weekly Talim Webinar: Discussions on YouTube on issues such as the existence of God
- Kahoot Quizzes: Weekly online Kahoot quizzes for Atfal and Khuddam to take part live and become champions. These comprise of both religious and secular topics
- Let’s Talk: Initiative for Atfal to take part in a discussion twice a week on a communication platform where they can ask questions to a missionary
- Atfal Trainee Scheme: A scheme for almost 100 Atfal to receive lessons for eight weeks on administrative skills, photography, becoming a junior journalist etc.
- Writing letters to the NHS: Atfal write letters to keyworkers to show their appreciation and support
- Atfal classes: Regional and local classes are being held online across the country for Atfal.
Aside from that, two national classes are running once a week
At the same time, the ladies wing of the Ahmadiyya Jamaat in the United Kingdom, Lajna Imaillah, is currently serving humanity through initiatives like foodbanks and occupying its members during the lockdown period through book study schemes.
Dr Fariha Khan, Sadr Lajna Imaillah UK, told Al Hakam:
“Lajna Imaillah is serving humanity during the Covid-19 crisis through khidmat-e-khalq [service to mankind] efforts by helping with shopping, collecting/ delivering prescriptions, providing the prescribed homeopathy medicine, cooking and delivering food, delivering essential supplies packs, distributing neighbourhood care cards, feeding the homeless, donating items to food banks and distributing medicine that is otherwise not easily accessible due to shortages.
“Apart from this, the Lajna talim [education] department has been sending quizzes to members. The sanat-o-tijarat [trade and industry] department has been sending videos and information promoting learning new skills and are currently making face masks for vulnerable individuals. The ishaat [publications] department has sent recommended reading lists.
“The tarbiyat department has found that their work on parenting has come at a very apt point as they have uploaded parenting workshops online, which are proving very useful for those mothers who are home-schooling their children these days. The sehat-e-jismani [health and fitness] department is sending correct up-to-date information regarding Covid-19 and how to keep fit, both physically and mentally, but also debunking myths.
“The Nasirat department has been very busy. Nasirat all over the country have been taking part in projects such as focusing on finishing their first reading of the Holy Quran, memorising duas [prayers], online Nasirat classes and also making pictures and posters for the NHS.
“The social media team has been very active in sending tweets and Instagram posts and also many blogposts related to this pandemic.
“I have been sending regular messages to Lajna in order to keep in touch with them and to keep their spirits high.”
This is only an example of what is keeping members of the Jamaat in the UK busy. By the grace of Allah, throughout the world, the Jamaat’s auxiliary bodies are working tirelessly in a similar fashion to engage its members as much as possible, despite not being able to physically attend mosques and centres. And that’s not all.
Aside from the Ahmadi doctors, nurses, pharmacists and many other staff and employees serving throughout the world during this crisis, Ahmadis, through its auxiliary bodies, are providing relief and comfort to those that have been affected.
It is truly a faith-inspiring spectacle when the Ahmadiyya Movement continues with its mission of tarbiyat and tabligh in the midst of a global crisis. How true are the words that “there is no earthly creature that can hinder the growth of Islam Ahmadiyyat”!
May Allah quickly alleviate the world from this suffering and let us come out of this battle even stronger, spiritually, physically and morally. Al Hakam wishes to remind everyone to pray for all healthcare and key workers, all Ahmadis and of course, the whole of humanity.