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South Auckland memorial service for Christchurch victims

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Baitul Muqeet, the New Zealand’s largest purpose built mosque, was the venue for a memorial service held on Saturday the 23rd of March to honour the victims of Christchurch terror attacks. More than 200 people from all faiths and walks of life came together to remember the victims and offer prayers for their bereaved families.

Members of Parliament including Hon Louisa Wall, Hon Judith Collins and Hon Melissa Lee, Council representatives, faith leaders from the Christians, Hindu and Sikh communities, as well from Manurewa Marae were amongst the notable attendees.

Welcoming the guests, the National President of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association NZ, Mr Bashir Khan spoke about how the events of last week had impacted the Muslim community. While acknowledging the tragic loss of life as well as the lasting effect on the bereaved families, Mr Khan also highlighted the exceptional professionalism demonstrated by the first responders, without which the loss of life may have been much higher.

Hon Louisa Wall and Hon Judith Collins, both expressed the grief felt by the people of New Zealand, and committed to work along with their parliamentary colleagues to ensure the safety of the communities by tightening the legislation around gun ownership. Speakers at the event shared their experiences of the emotionally draining week, and how this tragedy had brought all the people of New Zealand together in shared grief. The service closed with a silent prayer lead by the central missionary of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Imam Shafique ur Rehman, for everyone affected by the tragic events.

After the memorial, the attendees had an opportunity to meet with the members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community, and were also given a guided tour of the mosque with a brief introduction to the salient features of Islamic faith.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is a dynamic, fast-growing international revival movement within Islam. Founded in 1889 by Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1835-1908) in Punjab, India, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community spans over 210 countries with membership exceeding tens of millions. Its motto of ‘Love for all, hatred for none’ is evidenced through the peaceful actions of its millions of followers. The New Zealand branch of this community was established in 1987. It is a registered charitable organisation and endeavors to be an active and integrated community within New Zealand society.

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