UK: Khalifa of Islam in first East Midland visit to inaugurate new mosque in Leicester - Ahmadiyya Media Library

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Wednesday, 24 February 2016

UK: Khalifa of Islam in first East Midland visit to inaugurate new mosque in Leicester

Marble mosque in Leicester fulfils 50-year dream for members who have contributed to £1M centre

There will be tears of joy when a 50-year dream is fulfilled for a Leicester community that has been saving for a mosque of its own.

The World Head and Caliph of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community His Holiness Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad will visit Leicester for the first time to inaugurate the £1M mosque which is entirely self-funded by community members.

Children have given their pocket money, women have given their jewellery and the 300-strong community has sacrificed salaries and savings to realise the dream of the first Ahmadiyya Muslim Community mosque in Leicester, which will serve community members across the East Midlands.

The mosque has been built to deadline despite a massive fire at Britain’s biggest mosque in Morden, Surrey, which is also run by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. That fire in autumn last year destroyed materials that were being stored for the Leicester mosque.

But community members redoubled their fundraising efforts to realise the dream of the mosque, which is emblazoned with the Ahmadiyya ethos: Love for All, Hatred for None.

Leicester East MP Keith Vaz, Deputy Lieutenant David Wilson, Chief Constable Simon Cole, Police Commissioner Sir Clive Loader, MEP Margo Parker, High Sheriff Gordon Arthur and Lord Mayor Ted Cassidy will join councillors, faith and community leaders for the auspicious occasion which will be broadcast globally via the community’s satellite TV station MTA International, broadcasting in the UK on Sky 787. Proceedings will also be web-streamed. 

President of the Leicester branch of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Dr Habib Akram, said:
“For over half a century, members of the community have met in each other’s houses, in school halls and community centres. 20 years ago we managed to raise enough money to buy premises that became our mission house but we have outgrown even that which makes this new mosque a Godsend!
“We also purchased the factory next to the mission house and have doubled the size of the building to create a purpose-built mosque.
“It is the fulfilment of many hopes and dreams over decades. We are entirely a self-funded community - we do not accept any external funding – so this mosque is built on individual sacrifices, including by those who are dearly departed.
“It is a momentous day for us – we are joyful that our world Head is amongst us to inaugurate the mosque which will be a beacon of light in the religious landscape of Leicester. We are a community that is wedded to peace and to serving the community.
“We are committed to inter-faith relations, to charity and we instil values of loyalty to the country in which you live, good citizenship and service to humanity in all our community members.
“Our ethos, Love for All, Hatred for None is not a slogan- it is our way of life and the true message of Islam.”

Riaz Ravat, Deputy Director of St Philip's Centre, Leicester said: 
"I warmly congratulate the Ahmadiyya Muslim community as the opening of the new Baitul Ikram Mosque in Leicester is marked by a gathering of many different religious and belief communities and civic society. The Ahmadiyya community has a proud record of its members achieving success in the economic, political and social life of the United Kingdom. Through my work, I am aware that it is a community which has advanced messages of peace and reconciliation.
"Locally the community has held several 'Peace Symposiums' which have set the tone for the Ahmadiyya community’s work on interfaith. On a global level I know of their charitable efforts which have benefited the most needy in many parts of the world particularly in Africa, where people regardless of their religious or belief persuasions have had their life chances improved.
"The Baitul Ikram Mosque completes several years of hard work by the local community in an area of Leicester which is rich in faith diversity with several different places of worship in close proximity".

Assistant city mayor Cllr Manjula Sood said:
"On behalf of the City of Leicester, I welcome the world Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community for the inauguration of the Baitul Ikram Mosque.
"Hadrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad is an ambassador for peace, and we welcome him to our multicultural city.
"The Ahmadiyya community has been a part of city life for more than 50 years and its members make a valuable contribution to the work of our faith forum, and to peace and community relations in the city.
"On behalf of the city council, I congratulate the community on the opening of their new mosque."

The mosque will be inaugurated by Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, worldwide Caliph of the community, on Saturday 20 February.




  -- UK: Khalifa of Islam in first visit to East Midland to inaugurate new mosque

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