On Sunday, 30 April, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V, may Allah strengthen his hand, arrived at the Baitul Futuh Mosque and led the Zuhr and Asr prayers before proceeding to the Tahir Hall at approximately 17:00 BST to address the concluding session of the UK Waqifeen-e-Nau Ijtema 2023.
On arrival, after conveying salaam to all attendees, Huzooraa invited Ehsan Ahmad Sahib to recite a portion of the Holy Quran. The Quranic verses were from Surah as-Saffat, verses 100-112 and spoke of the great sacrifice of Hazrat Ibrahimas and his son, Hazrat Isma’ilas. The Urdu translation was presented by Muzaffar Ahmad Sahib and the English by Mashood Ahmad Sahib.
An Urdu poem by Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra was then read by Sohaib Ahmad Sahib. The English translation of the couplets was read out by Mabroor Farukh Sahib.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa then invited Anas Rana Sahib, Secretary Waqf-e-Nau UK to give the Ijtema report. Anas Sahib said the Ijtema was being held after 4 years. The waqifeen-e-nau were split into 5 groups during the Ijtema to cater for the large numbers. Each group had leaders and an array of activities to participate in. Apart from the academic competitions, participants benefitted from workshops such as “Islam and me” and tabligh workshops. There were presentations from MTA International, The Review of Religions and Waqf-e-Nau International. Sports and activity zones were also present. Amir Sahib UK also delivered a speech on “Khilafat – A Divine Institute”. Anas Rana Sahib said the total number of waqifeen-e-nau (boys) in the UK – above the age of 7 – is 3751. The total attendance of this year’s ijtema was 1552 – this compares to the 2019 ijtema attendance figure of 1394. 168 guests also attended this year’s ijtema.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa then took to the podium to deliver his address. Huzooraa said that with the grace of Allah, the national waqf-e-nau ijtema of the UK jamaat was taking place and its purpose was for “waqifeen-e-nau to join together to enhance their moral state, to increase their religious knowledge, to better understand their objectives and above all, to be inspired towards developing an everlasting bond with Allah the Almighty.
“The programme has been arranged to facilitate your religious training and spiritual development so that you become closer to Allah the Almighty as seeking His nearness is the ultimate objective for every waqif-e-zindagi – rather, every true Muslim.
“As you are all aware, your parents made a decision before you were born to dedicate and devote your lives to the service of the Jamaat. Nonetheless, waqifeen-e-nau are not compelled to remain in this scheme, rather, upon reaching an age of maturity, all members of Waqf-e-Nau must determine for themselves if they wish to renew the pledge made by their parents and continue their waqf. Many of you have already reached adulthood or are rapidly approaching it. Indeed, some of you are married with children and are no longer dependent upon your parents. Consequently, most of you are no longer at an age of ignorance or immaturity, and so, should be able to fully comprehend and grasp the gravity of the undertaking you have taken as members of Waqf-e-Nau. In general terms, if you make a promise or pledge to any person, you must try your level best to fulfil it, otherwise, you will be guilty of deceit and betray the other person’s trust.
“As waqifeen-e-nau, the pledge you have made is on a different level entirely as it is not made with any person, but directly with Allah the Almighty. You have each promised to spend your lives in His service and be ready for every sacrifice and hardship for His sake.
“Hence, today I wish to mention the spirit and level of sacrifice required to successfully fulfil and honour the demands of the pledge of Waqf-e-Nau.
“First and foremost, it is imperative that you continually strive to elevate the standards of your faith in Allah the Almighty and His religion. Only by attaining the love and nearness of Allah the Almighty can members of Waqf-e-Nau fulfil their pledge of bait to the Promised Messiahas and the demands of their waqf.
“The covenant you have made demands absolute faith and trust in Allah and requires you to constantly strive to build a living connection with Him. It demands that you be ready for every sacrifice for the sake of Allah and be utterly faithful, sincere and loyal to Him in every aspect of your life.”
Huzooraa said that once the Promised Messiahas – speaking about what constitutes true faith – referred to the faith of Hazrat Ibrahimas mentioned in the Quran: “And [of] Abraham, who fulfilled [the commandments].” (Surah an-Najm, Ch. 53: V. 38) In relation to this Quranic verse, the Promised Messiahas said that Allah the Almighty has testified to the supreme obedience and sincere loyalty of Hazrat Ibrahimas” – he not only made a pledge but also fulfilled it.
“As I have said, your pledge is of utmost seriousness and magnitude. In essence, you have affirmed before God that you will be ready for every possible sacrifice and hardship for His sake and will, until your dying breath.”
“I firmly believe that if every member of the Waqf-e-Nau scheme, with a purity of heart, lives up to this pledge, then, together, you can bring forth a great spiritual revolution in the world and liberate society from the chains of moral decay in which it has become shackled.
“However, for this, you will need the help and love of Allah the Almighty and to attain that you must give precedence to Him over everything else.”
The Promised Messiahas said that to attain the love of Allah, one must manifest absolute loyalty to Him – this is what Hazrat Ibrahimas showed. The Promised Messiahas said that Hazrat Ibrahimas showed absolute sincerity and loyalty to Allah. One must be ready to give every kind of sacrifice and endure all kinds of hardships to Allah to attain absolute sincerity towards Allah.
“It requires a person to willingly withstand humiliation and rejections, to be ready for all possible sacrifices.”
“As waqf-e-nau the onus is on you even more than other Ahmadis, to be faithful and obedient to Allah the Almighty in every respect. Yet, the path to Allah the Almighty is not straight or simple. Indeed, the Promised Messiahas has stated that with every turn and corner, there are worldly attractions that can corrupt a person’s faith.
“In fact, the Promised Messiahas has equated anything that takes a person away from God to be a false idol.”
The Promised Messiahas has stated that idolatry is not just worshipping a tree or a stone, rather, anything which acts as an obstacle towards God is an Idol. “Man harbours so many idols within himself that he does not even realise that he is guilty of worshipping them.”
The Promised Messiahas said that “Until a person does not sincerely become God’s and until he is not ready to endure every trial and tribulation in His way, it is extremely for him to develop true fidelity and sincerity with God.”
The Promised Messiahas stated that Hazrat Ibrahimas was given a high rank in the Quran because of his will to give up everything for His sake, even his own son. The Promised Messiahas said that Allah desires the practical manifestation of one’s faith and this demands struggle, trials and tribulations.
“It is quite easy to proclaim that you are loyal to Allah the Almighty and willing to tolerate everything for His sake, but true faith is actually demonstrated when a person is tested and where real sacrifice is required.”
Huzooraa said every waqif-e-nau must be ready to endure every hardship and sacrifice in Allah’s way. If they do this, they are truly those who devote their lives purely for Allah’s sake.
“Always keep in view the extraordinary way in which Hazrat Ibrahimas fulfilled his pledge. Similarly, you should look to the Companions of the Holy Prophetsa who displayed incredible levels of faith and devotion. They surrendered all personal desires and were ever-ready to give their lives for the sake of their faith. Similarly, the companions of the Promised Messiahas also showed exemplary standards of sacrifice. Amongst his followers were those who relinquished all material pursuits and worldly opportunities for the sake of their faith. They included exceptionally well-educated people who had gained Bachelors’ and Masters’ degrees – which was extremely rare at that time and for whom there was a huge demand in society. Instead of seeking fame and fortune, they left behind everything and came into the service of the Promised Messiahas. They devoted their lives to the service of Islam and fulfilled their pledges without a second thought for what they had left behind.”
“It is with this mindset that the waqifeen-e-nau and the waqifeen-e-zindagis should seek to live their lives. If not, their claim of having devoted their lives will be hollow and not based on truth.
“I reiterate that you must all recognise the value and significance of your pledge and for this, the most crucial element is to develop a personal bond and loving relationship with Allah the Almighty.”
“Every waqf-e-zindagi and waqif-e-nau must offer the five daily prayers each day with punctuality and should carefully reflect upon the meaning of each prayer.
“The Holy Prophetsa explained that a Muslim should prostrate in sajdah with complete humility. Hence, you should offer every namaz with due care, as prescribed by the Holy Prophetsa, rather than quickly going through the motions.
“[…] a waqif-e-nau should be regular in offering nawafil, voluntary prayers so that their relationship with Allah the Almighty becomes stronger. Only when a personal and living bond with your Creator develops within you, will you start to attain the standard of loyalty required of a person who fulfils his pledge or pledges and who has vowed to dedicate his life for the sake of his faith.”
“Similarly, as waqifeen-e-nau, you must recite the Holy Quran daily and read its translation. In addition, you should study the commentaries of the Promised Messiahas and the Khulafa so that your understanding of its teachings increases.” Huzooraa said if one does not understand the Holy Quran’s teachings, they will not be able to spread them.
Huzooraa said, “It is the obligation of those who have devoted their lives to demonstrate the highest possible moral standards and to seek to adopt every kind of virtue. In your daily lives, you should observe the best morals and etiquettes when you are with your family, friends, and fellow students […] always hold fast to the truth and never permit yourselves to engage in falsehood. Speak to others respectfully and kindly.”
With regard to marriage, Huzooraa said waqifeen-e-nau should “prioritise righteousness and piety when it comes to finding a wife so that your home environment is religious and according to the teachings of Islam.” This would only happen when one is religious-minded. Once married, a waqif-e-nau must exhibit the best morals with their wives and children. This will safeguard the next generation of the Jamaat.
Huzooraa said that modesty was essential for boys and men as well. In a society of indecency and vulgarity, Muslim men should lower their gaze. Avoiding all immoral and obscene content on social media, television or elsewhere was essential. Exposure to such content could easily corrupt one’s mind and studies have shown that exposure to pornography or similarly vulgar material is hugely damaging.
Huzooraa said those who have dedicated their lives for Allah’s sake must pay particular attention to upholding modesty.
All waqifeen-e-nau should take part in Atfal-ul-Ahmadiyya and Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya and attend all of their events. “When you attend such events, it should be your firm intention to increase your religious knowledge” and improve the practice of your faith.
Huzooraa said that people will understand true Islamic teachings when they observe waqifeen-e-nau as having true Islamic morals.
Huzooraa said all waqifeen-e-nau should be sincere and obedient to Khilafat. He said:
“If you are sincere with Khilafat, it will not only benefit you personally and be a means of gaining the rewards of Allah, it will ensure that the unity within our jamaat will grow ever stronger.”
Huzooraa said waqifeen-e-nau should abandon all sorts of arrogance and should instead be humble. The Promised Messiahas was always the epitome of humility, despite his great status. Allah said that He liked the Promised Messiah’sas “humble ways.” We must strive to be like the Promised Messiahas and instil those qualities and virtues fundamental to righteousness.
Huzooraa said that the Promised Messiahas had stated his followers should seek to learn about the world and gain its insight. “Accordingly, apart from religious studies, waqifeen-e-nau must also strive to excel in their secular education. Always seek to increase your knowledge and do not waste time on trivial things. Consider how you can benefit humanity and advance human understanding.
“The waqifeen who enrol in Jamia Ahmadiyya should also – alongside their religious studies – try to increase their secular knowledge. It is vital for missionaries to have an understanding of what is happening in the world so they can relate to other people.
“[…] Those waqifeen-e-nau studying or working externally, particularly in research, should endeavour to climb to the pinnacle of their respective fields of learning.”
In the end, Huzooraa prayed:
“May you be counted amongst the most faithful servants of the spiritual army of the Promised Messiahas, whose mission is not to conquer lands or territories but rather to win the hearts of mankind and to bring the people of all nations, races and beliefs towards Allah the Almighty.
“May all of you, as waqifeen-e-nau, come to play an outstanding role in conveying the message of Islam and Ahmadiyyat to every corner of the world.
“May Allah enable you to do so. Amin.”
At 18:01 BST Huzooraa concluded his address and led everyone in silent prayers.