It has long been a custom of the Jamaat that Ahmadis from distant countries visit the Markaz (Headquarters) of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat to seek educational and spiritual benefit.
Though individual visits have become a norm, over the past few years the frequency of auxiliary and departmental visits have increased as well.
Recently, 18 Waqifeen-e-Nau from Australia and 16 Waqifeen-e-Nau from Norway, to help them decide career paths which they can undertake to serve the Community and seek guidance from their beloved Imam, came to London this week and had the opportunity to meet Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa as well as to learn about the central administrative offices of the Jamaat.
Of course, the primary purpose of such an undertaking, as explained by the young Waqifeen themselves, was to offer all five prayers on a daily basis behind Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa and seek his guidance. However, they were also given tours of Jamia Ahmadiyya UK, Islamabad, Hadiqatul Mahdi, the offices of Al-Shirkatul Islamiyyah and Baitul Futuh to educate them about the ways in which they can serve the Jamaat through their Waqf.
Whenever people come from distant lands and meet Huzooraa, it is always amazing to hear them describe how a few days in the presence of such a holy person has changed their lives. Many a time have we spoken to Atfal as young as 10 years old who have been greatly moved by the spiritual atmosphere to be found around the vicinity of those places frequented by Huzooraa.
Muhammad Abdus Salam Danish (12 years old) – the youngest in the group from Australia – was visibly moved whilst narrating his experience. He told us:
“The reason why I came here was because I was so interested and I want to go to Jamia, so I wanted to see how the UK Jamia works. I also wanted to come because I wanted to meet Huzooraa, pray behind him and listen to his Friday Sermon whilst sitting in front of him. When we were meeting Huzooraa, I was very nervous and excited. I asked Huzooraa when he planned to come to Australia again? He came in 2006 when I was born and he held me in his arms. Huzooraa replied by saying that he would come if he got the chance. This trip, overall, was the best trip I’ve been on – I had the best trip of my life. After seeing Jamia, I want to be a murrabi.”
The groups also had the opportunity to have mulaqats with Huzooraa – something which they all spoke about as being one of the main reasons they wanted to come to London. Farhan Ahmad (15 years old) from Sydney told us:
“I asked Huzooraa a question which I had, and that was that I have two years of study left, so should I continue with my studies, present myself now for Waqf or go to Jamia? Huzooraa asked what subjects I was interested in and suggested that I should go into accounting due to my current interests. He also said that in the two years I have left, I should really pray a lot and think about Jamia because regarding Waqf, we should not be doubleminded; he said that we should definitely know if we want to go to Jamia. Huzoor also explained how Waqf means that you are committing your whole life for the Jamaat.”
Rehan Abbas (13 years old) from Melbourne said:
“I first heard about the trip during our Khuddam Ijtema. I am not a Waqf-e-Nau but this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so I wanted to come; and now that I have come, I want to come every year. The first time we saw Huzooraa was during Fajr prayer, and when he entered the room, we felt a warm feeling which cannot be described. The trip has been a great success and it has been life changing. I feel like a different person after this trip. I’ve seen behind-the-scenes activities and I’ve seen the Friday Sermon with my own eyes.”
Farhan Khalid (16 years old) from Melbourne said:
“I came to this trip because I was in doubt whether I wanted to be a murrabi or not, and then I had this opportunity to come and see Jamia and remove the doubt and choose a proper path. One of the biggest reasons [for coming] was meeting Huzooraa. And coming here was a great experience. Offering all the prayers behind Huzooraa was a feeling hard to explain – whenever he looks at you, you feel great. It’s a completely different feeling [seeing him]; you don’t get tired and you want to keep on listening to him. We also met many individuals who are in various offices and asked them questions. We also visited Jamia and I liked the way everything was run there. I asked Huzooraa a few questions, one of which was what tabarruk [holy relic] he possessed of the Promised Messiahas? He told us that he had two rings and he showed us one, two coats that he usually wears at Bai‘at and he also said that he had a comb. Meeting Huzooraa was the best part of the whole trip.”
The feeling that we got whilst speaking to these youngsters was of deep determination. It was as if the spirit of Waqf had taken on a new form after spending time in the company of Huzooraa. Whenever such narratives are recorded or heard, we must reflect on the importance that the Promised Messiahas gave towards his Jamaat journeying to meet him. And now that we have the blessed institution of Khilafat, when we speak to individuals telling us that their lives have been changed after meeting Huzooraa, we can truly understand the importance of the Promised Messiah’sas desire.