Jalsa Salana, Australia
The Annual Convention
History in the making - Huzur's Visit to Australia 2006
Reception Dinner - 15/04/06
- This reception dinner was held in honour of His Holiness, Mirza Masroor Ahmad's first visit to Australia.
- Huzur (aba) arrived in the VIP dinner marquee at 6:15pm, where all the guests were already seated.
- The program started with the recitation of the Holy Quran by Rana Ejaz Ahmad, followed by the English translation.
- National Ameer and Missionary In-Charge of Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat of Australia, Maulana Mahmood Ahmad then addressed the audience. His focus was on briefly introducing Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad to all the guests.
- He mentioned that Huzur (aba) is the great grandson of the founder of the Ahmadiyya Movement, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad.
- He was born in 1950 in Rabwah, Pakistan.
- Ameer Sahib highlighted various achievements of Huzur (aba) and pointed out that he served in Ghana for 8 years and then he held high positions in the Jamaat as well for a number of years.
- He was elected Khalifa on the 22nd of April 2003 in London.
- This was followed by an address by the Hon. Philip Ruddock MP, Attorney General of Australia.
- He initially welcomed Huzur (aba) and all the other MPs.
- Then he acknowledged the significant and substantial contribution made by Australian Ahmadies.
- He then mentioned the Australian culture, which is of respecting each other's religions and practicing your own.
- He also highlighted that everyone is free to practice their own religion as long as they respect the law and freedom of this country.
- After this, the Hon. John Aquilina, Speaker of the NSW Legislative Assembly and Representative of the Premier of NSW addressed the audience.
- After welcoming Huzur (aba), he went on to describe Australia as a nation of tolerance and people from different backgrounds living together in harmony.
- He further mentioned the first Ahmadi in Australia, Sufi Moosa Khan.
- He then complimented the message of peace that the Ahmadiyya Jamaat in Australia promotes and adheres to.
- Finally, on behalf of the people of NSW, he said: "May Peace be with all of you…"
- Louise Markus, Member for Greenway was the next speaker.
- Welcomed Huzur (aba) and then mentioned the wonderful opportunity available now for all of us to unite together and make the World a safer and more peaceful place to live.
- She acknowledged some of the common values the Ahmadiyya Jamaat members share with the majority of Australians and then she recognised the significant contribution made by the Ahmadiyya Jamaat in the community.
- The final speaker before Huzur's (aba) speech was Councillor Kathie Collins, Representative of Blacktown City Council.
- She recognised the commitment made by the Ahmadiyya Jamaat in Australia to the environment by the increasing participation in the Clean Up Australia Day over the past 15 years.
- She also thanked the Ahmadiyya Community of Australia for the invitation and she wished prosperity and further growth for the Ahmadiyya Jamaat in this country.
- Following this, Huzur (aba) delivered his speech.
- After welcoming all the guests, His Holiness went on to explain that true justice cannot be established until the super-powers of the World do not stop their double standards.
- The teachings of love and brotherhood are essential for the building of healthy societies and positive international relations.
- Huzur (aba) stressed that peace can only be achieved by turning to our God.
- The Promised Messiah (as) came to unite everyone under one banner and bring people back to the true teachings of Islam.
- Huzur (aba) then quoted various Quranic verses to portray that Islam is not a religions of terror and hatred.
- Wars were fought in the early history of Islam as a means of self-defence and in order to try to maintain peace, as the Muslims at that time were victimised and attacked.
- One should suppress his/her anger and not seek revenge.
- Enemies were even forgiven by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his companions, just in order to seek the pleasure of God.
- In conclusion, Huzur (aba) thanked all the guests for attending this reception dinner and listening to his address.
- He finally prayed for the peace and prosperity of this nation and ended his address with by leading silent prayers.
- Dinner was served after this and everyone enjoyed the delicious variety of food available.
- During dinner, Huzur (aba) had informal conversations with Hon. Philip Ruddock MP and the other Member of Parliaments present at Huzur's (aba) table.
- Graeme Lyall AM, the Chairman of the Buddhist Council of NSW was also interviewed exclusively by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Website Team at this time and he mentioned that he had visited the Bait-Ul-Huda mosque a number of times before this. When asked about his experience and impression of his visit this time, he mentioned that he found the people of the Ahmadiyya Community warm and friendly. He felt like they were his brothers and he thought that they felt the same towards him. He also pointed out that it was a good opportunity for him to hear the voice of the true Islam.
- After the completion of dinner, Huzur (aba) presented Hon. Philip Ruddock and Hon. John Aquilina both with a commemorative shield each.
- Huzur (aba) graciously also went around each table and met with all the guests present at the reception dinner.
- These guests included a number of Member of Parliaments, Councillors and various other dignitaries.
- Apart from the dignitaries who spoke during the program, a few of the other VIPs attending the reception dinner were as follows: Julie Owens MP, Member for Parramatta since 2004, Allan Shearan, State Member for Londonderry and Member of the Legislative Assembly, Tony Burke MP, Member for Watson and Shadow Minister for Immigration, Jackie Kelly MP, Member for Lindsay and Ex-Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, Councillor George Bilic from the Blacktown City Council and Laurie Ferguson MP, Member for Reid, Shadow Minister for Consumer Affairs as well as Shadow Minister for Population and Health Regulation.
- The program ended at 8:25pm and then Huzur (aba) led Maghrib and Isha prayers at 8:30pm to conclude day 5 of Huzur's (aba) historic trip to Australia.
Signing off, the 15th of April 2006,02.00pm
Gents News Team