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Friday Sermon(03-01-2014)-Financial Sacrifice and Waqf-e-Jadid

07 Jan

Friday Sermon(03-01-2014)-Financial Sacrifice and Waqf-e-Jadid

After tashhud, ta’awwuz and recitation of Sura Al-Fatiha, Huzur Aqdas (may Allah strengthen him with His Mighty Help) said that:

First, I wish to say to all of you and to all Ahmadis spread throughout the world, that may Allah bless the new year. I have been receiving such congratulatory, prayerful, mubarakbaad [blessings] messages from individual Ahmadis, from Jama’ats and from Ahmadiyya Jama’at institutions. May Allah bless this new year for them all and for all Jama’ats. And I convey this prayer, this blessing, with the message that Allah, the Almighty, may, by His sheer Grace, fill this year, more than before, with the signs of His Mercy and Grace and Blessings.

This is, of course, the prayer of every Ahmadi, as it should be, and most certainly is, but just to convey a mubarakbaad, a prayer for blessings, customarily is of no benefit. It is, in fact, like the the act of the worldly minded people if we convey these mubarakbaads, these messages of blessings, without having the desire and without praying to be granted, the Grace, Blessings and Mercy of Allah the Almighty.

Such desires and wishes would serve no purpose, and these prayers also would achieve nothing, if we do not employ and make use of those capacities and abilities that Allah has bestowed upon us for attaining these bounties of God, and fail to act on those things which Allah has directed us to carry out.

It is not enough for us to get together and offer voluntary prayers in congregation on New Year’s night if we also do not develop the feeling that now we have to try, as far as possible, to continue to offer these voluntary prayers every night; and have to improve the standard of our worship to acquire the Grace of God; and have to try in our daily practical life to do everything with the sole motive of winning the pleasure of God.

If, two days ago, we have begun the new year with such thoughts and intentions and have congratulated and wished God’s blessings on each other with such feelings then we shall surely be listed among those who shall be the recipients of God’s Grace, Mercy and blessings. May Allah make it so that every one of us possesses such thinking and if such is not the case, then may He make this our way of thinking.

This is the kind of thinking that also makes one grateful for God’s previous bounties and blessings upon us - all those bounties and blessings that He has caused to descend upon us by His sheer Grace. Such thoughts make one bow before God in thanks and gratitude. And it is our pure, sincere, bowing before God which truly is the purpose of our lives and this is what we have been informed by Allah, the Exalted. So this is the spirit that should be the motive force behind our best wishes and congratulations.

When we carry out an analysis of the past year, we see that from the point of view of the Jama’at, we faced some difficulties, yes, but still, 2013 can be seen to have brought upon us innumerable blessings and bounties of God. So if we wish to continue being the recipients of these bounties of God then we shall have to adopt humility, work hard and involve ourselves in prayer. If we do this then we can hope to be able to continue to absorb such immense Divine Grace.

This is especially true for those who have been bestowed some office or the other to serve the Jama’at. They must especially keep this in mind that in order to be able to absorb the Grace of God we need to adopt humility and lowliness and work hard and pray. Some people become happy thinking that they have been blessed the opportunity to work in so many different offices in the Jama’at. No doubt they utter the sentence that are being blessed the opportunity to work in these offices but the due discharge of these works assigned to a person will be done fully when there will appear, in no part of the mind of that person, any kind of thought of him or her occupying an office...of being in some elevated station...but rather the thought should be of serving the faith.

“Consider the opportunity to serve the faith a Grace of God.”

This should be the thought in the mind of the person bestowed these opportunities. One’s own ego, arrogance and haughtiness or thinking oneself better than the other should not even cross one’s mind. The people who work with this mindset and keep humility always at the forefront of their thoughts, Allah endows their works with unlimited blessings.Those who come to assist such people become their full fledged and enthusiastic helpers in executing and accomplishing the work of the Jama’at and the members of the Jama’at also readily and heartily accept whatever such people ask of them.

May Allah enable all our officeholders and those devoted to serving the Jama’at develop and adopt humility, lowliness and sincerity and become hard working and prayerful and daily more so than before. And when this happens then truly they will become the “sultanan naseera” - a helping power - for the Khalifa of the time also. And the members of the Jama’at also would then turn, with full loyalty, to attend to the work of the Jama’at giving such work preference over all other worldly tasks. In this way we will be able to go on seeing and witnessing the Grace of God always.

As every Ahmadi knows, our job is to go on advancing the mission and work of the Promised Messiah(as). We have to advance the work that has to do with the spreading the message of Islam throughout the world. We have the job of gathering together the split and splintered Muslims all over the world. We have to make the people of the world such as would bow and humble themselves before God Almighty. By the Grace of Allah, the Exalted, the Jama’at is executing and accomplishing this work. The building of missions and mosques and the work of tabligh/outreach, the preparation and publication of literature and the training and preparation of missionaries and sending them into the field - all these things are being done by the Jama’at by the Grace of Allah, the Exalted.

As I have said, the purpose of our lives, according to the directives of Allah, the Exalted, is to worship God. And offering the Salat in congregation is obligatory upon every Muslim man. And for the offering of these obligatory prayers in congregation it is necessary to arrange for the building of mosques or places where such worship can be offered. From among the innumerable blessings that Allah bestowed upon the Jama’at in the previous year, this was one of the great Graces of God that we were able to build and populate mosques in the world - we did such work in Europe and Australia and the Far East also but especially in Africa and India a lot of work got done and let me present some details about this also.

In 2013, by the Grace of Allah, the Exalted, 136 mosques were built; and in India, in some small places, small temporary mosques or sheds have been constructed using wood and tin and these numbered 22. We were also blessed with 258 new mosques. We were given these 258 mosques in this way that the work of tabligh/outreach that the Jama’at is doing resulted in Imams joining us and they brought these mosques also with them and the people also joined.

As I said, most of this work has happened in African and India. From among these 158 mosques that I mentioned [136 plus the 22], 102 are full fledged mosques built in Africa and 22 perhaps in India, sheds so that they can be used right away to fulfill the immediate needs.

There are currently 41 mosques under construction in Africa and, as I said, in other countries also mosques were constructed and are being constructed also. Similar is the case of mission houses.121 mission houses or tabligh centers were constructed from which 77 were in Africa and 5 were in India. So these are the two main places, India is a huge country and Africa is a continent and there are 6,7 or 8 countries on its two sides where work is progressing with very great speed.

Then, as I said, our work is to spread the message of Islam in the world, and disseminate the real, true and beautiful teachings of Islam everywhere so that the world may get to know these beautiful teachings and our missionaries are, masha-Allah, by the Grace of Allah, doing this work.

Apart from this, when I travel to different parts of the world, the Jama’at gets to be introduced to a certain extent also in this way and the world learns about the teachings of Islam. And then advancing and building on this, our missionaries continue the work. There are some who, on an ongoing basis, permanently, publish columns in the newspapers of their respective countries. Then there are some who write columns in newspapers based on my Khutbas, sermons, and thus introduce Islam to their readers. So in this way also our message is spreading and this year that has just ended this work came to be blessed with a great expansion.

I have just talked about my trips abroad and I have already informed about these in my talks at the end of these trips. As a result of the trips I undertook to America last year, overall, some 12 million people received our message and during the tour of two cities of Canada some 8.5 million people received our message. So in both these countries some 20 million people received the message of Islam in this way.

These are the innumerable blessings of God in this sense also that newer and newer ways of conveying the message of Islam to the people of the world are opening up before us. During my trips, as I said, new ways have opened up to convey the message of Islam and our missionaries have gone on to expand on these efforts much more afterwards. Those missionaries who are active, who love their work and attend to it painstakingly, continue afterwards to expand and grow this work. And those who do this are being blessed with great success in their efforts by the Grace of God.

Similarly, during the trips to Germany, I placed the foundation stones of two mosques and joined in their Jalsa and during these trips their newspapers and radio and tv stations provided us coverage that went well beyond the borders of Germany and reached Austria and Switzerland also since the tv channels who covered the events were jointly serving these countries also. And in this way, overall, during these journeys of Germany, the message reached some 4 million people.

Then there is Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan. During my journeys to these countries, the media covered my trips very widely and as I mentioned earlier upon my return, some 30 million people received our message as a result.

So this is the Grace of Allah, the Exalted and it could not have been achieved through human endeavors. The case of human toiling is that the Ahmadi gentleman, our PA department secretary or media representative in Australia, was in touch with the press there and he had tried to get in touch with one of their regional newspapers and had secured a promise from their reporter that he would come and do an interview. But when the time came this reporter said he could not make it.

But Allah, the Exalted, had arranged things such that this reporter of a regional newspaper excused himself and 15 minutes later the representative of their national newspaper was contacted and it appeared as if he had been sitting waiting for our call to tell him about my visit to Australia and in 15 minutes he came and conducted the interview So this is simply and truly due to the Grace of Allah, the Exalted that He shows us signs of His Power and Help. The officeholders of Australia Jama’at did not expect or hope that in such a short time any newspaper representative would make it and carry out the interview, certainly not a national newspaper, and that the interview would actually get printed in the national newspaper as actually happened.

In Germany also this was the first time that the national tv gave us coverage. And the national and international channels of Australia also broadcast our news and as I have already told people this news reached 40 countries. New Zealand tv gave this news and their Mauri channel also. In Japan there is a newspaper that has a circulation of some 20 million and they interviewed me and published the news and then not only this but afterwards they also interviewed the missionary incharge of Japan too and again printed the news and they asked questions about Islam and our mosque that is being built there, which is the first mosque, they published news about that also.

By the Grace of Allah, the Exalted, we have been bestowed an expansive location in Japan for the building of the new mosque and there is an already built hall on the land that is also facing the direction of the qibla so we shall not have to change it. In any case through the building of this mosque also Islam is being introduced increasingly through Ahmadiyyat in Japan.

So, as I said, this mosque and because of this trip, it is not the case that attention was drawn for an instant and then it came to an end, no not at all, but they interviewed the missionary afterwards and they shared more information following up on what had been published first.

So, in any case, the Grace of Allah, the Exalted, is immense and the cases of His Grace are innumerable. Through radio and television during my visits some 182 million, six hundred thousand people received our message. Similarly this year through 1,088 newspapers more that 160 million people received our message. So this is all the Grace and Bounty of Allah, the Exalted, Who has made all this possible and made all the arrangements for our message to reach people on this immense and wide scale.

The work that is happening in African nations is apart from all this. Work is being done there on a very wide ranging scale. Tens of millions of people are receiving our message there through the media. In Ghana, their national government run tv, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation has started broadcasting our MTA programs. They broadcast the proceedings of the Jasla of 2013 and these programs are reaching the neighboring countries also through satellite. So we see that Allah, the Exalted, is making extraordinary arrangements to open up ways for the message of true Islam to reach the people.

This year, my various receptions that have taken place, those attending them have also been affected very powerfully. The people who came from among the well read and the intelligentsia, politicians, policy-makers, when they learnt about the true teachings of Islam, they found these points of view to be totally new. The fact is, of course, that these are not points of view or a fabricated picture, these are the real teaching of Islam. It was a totally strange and amazing thing for them that such teachings could in fact be the teachings of Islam. So which of the bounties of God should we try to count.

Some people possessing hypocritical tendencies, when they see all this, are wont to say that this happened through such and such a person or that so much was spent to make it happen; in any case there are only a few such people in the Jama’at and the fact is that in order to get the message of the Jama’at communicated, we neither need any particular person nor do we need to spend money the way that it has been rumored by such rumormongers. This is the sheer Grace of Allah, the Exalted. So the members of the Jama’at should be wary of such people also, they spread such thoughts in very crafted ways, these hypocritical people. Work on such wide expansive scale cannot be accomplished by any person. It is only and solely the sheer Grace of Allah, the Exalted. And if Allah, the Exalted, had not desired for it to happen, then no matter how hard we had tried it would not have come about.

In fact I have seen in various journeys that there are some big people whom people have great desire to meet, and at times some such asked to meet me but I refused to meet them for some reason, and they made repeated requests after that imploring even, and many members of our Jama’at are witness to this. So for this thought or whim to come into someone’s mind that our message reaches the world through us meeting someone or through some particular person, is certainly and totally wrong. This all happens by the Grace of Allah, the Exalted and this is what He has promised to the Promised Messiah (as) that “I shall cause thy message to reach the corners of the Earth.” No particular person is going to make this happen.

So every Ahmadi must remember that neither do we want anything from any worldly person or leader nor do we have need for this. Our reliance is totally on the being of Allah, the Exalted. He is our Friend and Guardian and Helper and He is the One Who is showing us these extraordinary scenes of the progress of the Jama’at.

This progress in Africa has caused a great deal of consternation and worry among the so-called Muslim religious divines and some leaders. They are not happy to see that the world is getting together under the flag of God and His Messenger, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (sa); they are in fact rather worried that these people are becoming true Muslims through the efforts of Jama’at Ahmadiyya.

During the last little while a great deal of effort has been expended by these people worried by seeing that the people are adopting the true Islam that takes them away from discord and disturbances and moves them away from the so-called jihad that these people preach as they try to spread the Islam of violence and terror and harshness. And this is the thing that pains these worldly leaders or the so-called Muslim religious divines.

Our Missionary from Togo says that during a trip to Ayagupe in that Country, some new converts to Ahmadiyyat told them that a few days ago a group of Muslims came here and gave us some food and drink and said to us that, “We invite you to accept Islam.” The new Ahmadis asked them, “Are you inviting us to accept Islam or are you trying to bribe us by giving us these things so that we will accept Islam.” “We will never do so because the people of Jama’at Ahmadiyya came to us and they preached Islam to us and we have already accepted Islam and they did not try to bribe us in any way either and they are now teaching us this beautiful religion also.”

“They are teaching our children how to offer the prayers and how to recite the Holy Quran. So we will not take these things from you. Take these things back. We are not willing to accept the Islam that you are presenting to us. We will accept that true Islam which the Holy Prophet Muhammad (sa) brought and which is being preached today by the Ahmadiyya Jama’at.”

After this they have increased in their faith and now the new ahmadis have made their own mosque there also.

Similarly the Missionary from Niger writes that in Bernikoni there is a small village called Botoro where when we went to preach, a village accepted the message and entered the Jama’at. The children began to be taught to read the Holy Quran immediately using Yassarnal Quran and a Refresher Course was started for their Imam and tarbiyyati [training] programs were implemented. When this news reached a Wahabbi Mullah there, he immediately arrived with a group of mullahs and started a speech saying that these ahmadis are kafirs [disbelievers] and you should reject the Jama’at Ahmadiyya and we will make a mosque for you also.

The Chief of the village told them that, “look I am a Muslim by birth and now in the last part of my life but I never saw a girl of my community reciting the Holy Quran or talking about Islamic things but this is the blessing of Jama’at Ahmadiyya that my small young girls recite to me prayers and ahadees. So I am willing to forgive this, your first time coming here and saying these things, but if you return I will have the young men of the village treat you harshly.”

Upon hearing this, the mullahs, being as they are cowardly by nature, immediately got in their car and drove away.

Our Missionary from Burkina Faso writes that there is a Jama’at in Banfora called Niyakara. There we have some 210 people in the village who entered the Jama’at by performing bai’at this year. There are two families in this village who are associated with the Ansar-e-Deen sect. They met our members again and again and tried to make them leave Ahmadiyyat and join Ansar-e-Deen but the Ahmadis did not pay attention to their attempts. They told the missionary that they were being pressed hard to abandon the Jama’at but the things they have learnt by undergoing the tarbbiyyat [training] in Ahmadiyyat has strengthened their resolve to not go back into the darkness they existed in before. And now they have started to also make regular payments of chanda.

The same is the case with Benin. There is a small village called Jaroomayday. There, a person by the name of Kareem had entered the Jama’at by having performed the bai’at. Two or three months later, after coming under the influence of some maulvis, he started to oppose the Jama’at. The local area Muallam [teacher] of the Jama’at told Ameer Sahib of Benin that this man has used very abusive language against the Jama’at. Ameer Sahib says he told the Muallim not to worry and know that Allah has told to the Promised Messiah (as) that if one man leaves you He would give in his stead, by His Grace, a Jama’at.

That same day Ameer Sahib and that Muallim went to a village called Akonope to preach to the local King there, the Chief of that village, and he became an Ahmadi by Allah’s Grace. Then there were present at that meeting two men from a village called Waga and they invited them to their village also to preach this message to them. So they went there and offered Maghrib prayers in their village and conveyed the message to them and 32 people accepted Ahmadiyyat and so a new Jama’at came into being in the village. And that man who used to shout abuse it so happened that he became wanted by the Police in some matter and so he left the village and went somewhere else.

Missionary Incharge Sahib Nigeria writes that an area of Cameroon known as Foumban is known to be populated with very strict Muslim majority. They held a Khilafat Jalsa there for the first time and like every previous year some Muslim group from Pakistan tried to make the Jama’at the target of their attacks. Because the news of the Khilafat Jalsa was being broadcast on the media, this reached them also. So a group of the Tablighi Jama’at comprised of some 24 people arrived [ten from Kenya and some 15 from Cameroon and Chad border].

In this town, by God’s Grace, there is a majority of the Jama’at and the Chief and Imam and Naib Imam here accepted Ahmadiyyat since three years. So this group inquired about our Muallam [teacher] there and he is the one through whom the message of Ahmadiyyat reached to every house in this town. They were told by the wife of our Muallam that he was out of town. So they reached to the central mosque of the town which is a big mosque and alhamdolillah is an Ahmadi mosque. Here they asked the Chief Imam that we want to preach here and want to tell all of you about the truth about the Ahmadiyya Jama’at. Upon hearing this, our Chief Imam said to them that if you want to speak against the Ahmadiyya Jama’at then I should tell you that the mosque where you are standing is a mosque belonging to the Ahmadiyya Jama’at and we are all, by God’s Grace, Ahmadi Muslims. So you are not at all permitted to speak as you wish and you are all asked to leave. The Police were also informed and they expelled them from the town.

Similarly in South Africa these days Pakistani maulvis have gathered together. A group of 20 maulvis from Pakistan. There are maulvis from India and Saudi Arabia and there are some locals also who are conducting a program in opposition to the Jama’at together with the Muslim Judicial Council there. The same is the report from Sierra Leone. Here also tablighi mullahs from Pakistan, mullahs who have studied in Al Azhar University in Egypt, and Sierra Leonian mullahs who have gone from Sierra Leone to study in Saudi Arabia are there in the hundreds at the cost of Saudi Arabia and it is said that in every flight a lot of them are arriving. And they are going into the towns and villages and inciting people against the Ahmadis and Shias. Instead of preaching, their sole purpose seems to be to create discord and dissention and spread disorder.

In fact now, they have held an Africa Arab Summit there in which very large sums of money have been specified for Africa in general and Sierra Leone in particular for the purported purpose of promoting their welfare and education and progress. And the newspapers there contain these stories that we will make this and that and so on but, as always, and this has happened many times before also, they go there, they make announcements of monies to be given; and then, either the help never arrives, or if it arrives, it gets eaten up amongst themselves and nothing materializes and this, Good willing, also will be the case this time.

In any case, as the Jama’at continues to make progress, and as the Grace of God continues to pour down upon us, these oppositions also are picking up speed and they will. We are not worried by them nor should we be because in the end they are decreed to fail and whither. But the thing that we do need to worry about is that for us to be the recipients of God’s Grace in the future also, and for us to be able to confront these oppositions, we must develop a greater strength in our faith and try harder and more than before to fulfill the mission of the Promised Messiah (as) and pay greater attention than ever to our prayers.

So fill the coming year with prayers. Pay so much attention to the recitation of durood and istighfar that Allah, the Exalted, casting always a glance of Mercy upon us, may continue to make more and more expansive the Grace that He has been bestowing upon us and turn the machinations of our enemies upon them themselves. May He wipe out and make extinct, every opponent and every opposition. May His Grace continue to descend upon us in greater measure every day.

The Promised Messiah (as) says: God has placed great powers in prayer. God has told me repeatedly through revelation that whatever will happen will happen because of, and through prayer alone. Our weapon is prayer alone. I have no other weapon other than prayer.

So this is the weapon that we too have to make use of. May Allah enable us to make proper use of this weapon.

Today is the first Jumu’ah [Friday] of January and in keeping with tradition, the announcement of the new Waqf-e-Jadid year also happens on this Friday and the Grace of God that descended during the previous year by way of Waqf-e-Jadid and that continues to descend is also mentioned. Some of it I have already mentioned. Much of the Waqf-e-Jadid chanda [contributions] is used in Africa and this is another Grace of God that this chanda is enabling mosques to be made and tabligh to be carried out and for doing many other things. I will say a few more things in this connection.

As we all know in the beginning Waqf-e-Jadid used to operate in Pakistan only and then in the time of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IV (ra) this was extended to outside of Pakistan so that the work of the Jama’at in Africa and India may be given much greater expansion. As I have said, in the last one year, in Africa and India, a great deal of construction of mosques and mission houses has taken place and some have been bought also. Apart from this there are tablighi tasks by virtue of which hundreds of thousands of righteous souls have been blessed by Allah, the Exalted, to accept Ahmadiyyat, the true Islam.

Without a doubt, the Ahmadis living in these countries are also making extraordinary sacrifices, each according to his or her own means, but because of their lack of means, they cannot make sufficiently large sacrifices to meet all their expenditures. This is why the Waqf-e-Jadid chanda from the rich countries is used specifically in Africa and India. But as I said, the Ahmadis from these countries also make sacrifices with great passion and zeal.

Our Missionary from Guinea Conakry writes that an Ahmadi young man named Muhammad told him that my marriage date had been set but we did not have enough money to make the needed preparations and from where we had been expecting money we kept being disappointed. During this same time an appeal was made for chandas and I paid the money that we had as chanda and when my fiance found out she raised an uproar and complained that what had he done by giving away the little money that there was as chanda!

The young man told Missionary Sahib that he told her that I am a man of faith and I trust God and that there was no need for her to become agitated, Allah would Himself make arrangements for us because the money spent in the way of God never goes to waste. He says that the very next day when he went to work the very large sum that had been stuck for a long time was paid out to him and when he brought it to his home the people were astounded. How amazingly quickly Allah had bestowed His Grace.

Then it is also wonderful to see the ways of sacrifice that people adopt. Our missionary from Benin writes that in the beginning of the year in their region of Cotonou so much rains fell in the Atlantic region that all the crops of the people were ruined and the situation became like that of a famine. Far from having something to give in chanda, the people had nothing left, even to eat. In this situation they wrote to me also for prayers. And then, one of the Jama’ats there decided that since we pay chanda when we have some crops and now that the crops have been destroyed let us, next time, plant a special area the crops from which will be sold to pay chanda. So they did this and Allah, the Exalted, blessed this effort so much, that they paid some 11,800 francs as chanda.

Similarly a woman of Gambia says that when the person came to their home to get chanda she would go repeatedly into the house to get some chanda from each child. Seeing this her children also went inside the house and brought out whatever they had and offered it saying that they did not want to remain deprived of the blessings. So this is how Allah, the Exalted, also puts into the hearts of the children, the importance of paying chandas.

Then there is a lady from Gambia who was going to get some soap to wash clothes but learnt on her way that an appeal had been made for chandas and that everyone was being asked to pay what they could. So this lady gave the money she had for purchasing soap believing that Allah would arrange for her to get the soap some other way. So indeed Allah made the arrangement such that in a couple of days a guest came to their house and gave a whole box of soap to them as a gift.

Similarly, a lady in Benin, who always does much goodness in secret and participates in doing religious deeds to an extraordinary degree and who already had paid a great amount in chandas - nevertheless at year end when asked, she started counting the Grace of Allah upon her and paid another 100,000 francs in chanda. Then, when she was told that chanda was awaited from her certain daughter she paid a further 30,000 francs on her behalf also. So here we have such people who, when they are reminded of chandas, they put aside all their personal wishes and needs and attend to this duty in such extraordinary manner.

Similarly, our missionary from Tanzania writes that those who had not yet paid chanda when they were reminded they immediately started paying their chandas and so

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