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Benevolent Face of Islam

Reader comment on item: [Finding Moderate Muslims:] Do you believe in modernity?

Submitted by Waseem Sayed (United States), Oct 12, 2009 at 00:01

When a politician risks displeasing a lot more people than he will please, to speak in favor of someone, people should pay attention - especially when it affects our safety and security. Recently, in Canada, at the inauguration of another of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community's mosques, Mr. Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister of Canada did exactly this. He knew that Muslims in general consider the Ahmadis heretics and outside the pale of Islam. He knew that by praising them he would earn the ire of the million strong Muslim community in Canada - yet he spoke candidly and forthrightly about the Ahmadi Muslims as being the benevolent face of Islam. Here is what he said and this is straight from the Canadian PM's website:

Prime Minister Harper attends opening of Baitun Nur Ahmadiyya mosque
5 July 2008
Calgary, Alberta

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today participated in the unveiling of Canada's largest mosque complex. The spectacular 48,000-square-foot Baitun Nur mosque was inaugurated by the head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim community, His Holiness Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad.

Prime Minister Harper said the mosque symbolized how the relatively small Canadian Ahmadiyya community, most of whom are recent immigrants from Central and South Asia, has prospered and flourished in Canada's pluralistic society. "Ahmadis are renowned for their devotion to peace, universal brotherhood and submission to the will of God – the core principles of true Islam," said Prime Minister Harper. "They are also renowned for working together to serve the greater good through social, health and education initiatives, as well as mosque projects like this one. And wherever they live in the world, Ahmadis are renowned for participating in the larger community and peacefully co-existing with people of all faiths, languages and cultures."

The Prime Minister also paid tribute to His Holiness the Kalipha as a champion of peace and religious freedom. "We especially applaud the Kalipha for denouncing those who pervert faith by claiming it as a justification for violence," Prime Minister Harper said, noting that many Ahmadis who endured persecution in their homelands have found religious freedom in Canada.

"Calgarians, Albertans and Canadians will see the moderate, benevolent face of Islam in this mosque and the people who worship here," the Prime Minister said. "They will see your love for Canada and your patriotism, and they will see that just as Ahmadis have embraced Canada, Canada has embraced you."

All of us who share this planet will benefit knowing more about this Muslim Community: www.alislam.org

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