The 47th Annual Convention (Jalsa Salana) of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat UK began today at the vast Oaklands Farm site in Alton known as ‘Hadeeqatul Mahdi’. The three-day international event has attracted global interest with around 30,000 delegates attending from dozens of countries.
This year the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat UK is celebrating its 100year anniversary and the Jalsa Salana is the biggest event taking place during the centenary year.
During the course of the first day, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, the World Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, twice addressed the delegates. Firstly, during his Friday Sermon and then later during the first full session of the Jalsa Salana. Further, as a means to officially inaugurate the event, His Holiness raised the Flag of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, whilst the Union Jack was also raised.
During his Friday Sermon, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, spoke of the purposes of the Jalsa Salana. He said it was a purely spiritual event and its purpose was to bring about positive moral changes amongst all the participants in an effort to acquire the pleasure of God Almighty.
During the afternoon session, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad spoke of how the Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian had come to enlighten the world of the true and peaceful teachings of Islam. He said the Promised Messiah had called on his followers to exhibit true faith in God through their actions, not just through their words.
Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad said a key part of Islamic faith was to serve mankind. His Holiness said that it was the duty of all true Muslims to fulfil the rights of others, rather than seeking only their own rights. He said that the Promised Messiah had taught that the hearts of Muslims should be filled with love for mankind.
Speaking about the 100 year anniversary of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat UK, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad said:
“This year we are celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat UK. However, this anniversary can only prove to be a source of true happiness if the 100 years have led to a spiritual revolution amongst us that will continue through our future generations.”
Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad concluded his address by praying for peace in the world. He said conflicts were increasing in various parts of the world and that the results of such clashes could be devastating. He urged all parties towards justice and fulfilling the due rights of one another.
The session concluded with a silent prayer before the thousands of Ahmadi Muslims dispersed to various locations. Some were camping at Hadeeqatul Mahdi; some had booked hotels nearby, whilst others were commuting.
At this year’s Jalsa Salana a number of exhibitions have been set up including a photographic exhibition illustrating the history of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat and an exhibition documenting the 100 year history of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat UK. Another exhibition highlights the persecution faced by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat in certain countries and its peaceful and positive response to all such unjust opposition.
The full proceedings of the Jalsa Salana are being broadcast worldwide on MTA International which can be viewed on Sky 787 in the UK. It can also be streamed online on MTA.tv.