2010 Ijtima Report
Majlis Ansārullāh, USA 29th National Ijtimā' And 18th Majlis Shūrā (2010)
Imran Hayee - Qā'id Umumi
The 29th National Ijtimā' of Majlis Ansārullāh USA was held in the Baitur-Rahman Mosque, Silver Spring, from October 8 to 10, 2010. As is customary, to the National Ijtimā', the 18th Majlis Shūrā of Majlis Ansārullāh was also held during this time. By the Grace of Almighty Allah, both the Ijtimā’ and the Majlis Shūrā were very successful, with a combined total attendance of more than 550 Ansār from all over the USA, highest ever attendance beating the previous highest record of the last year. The record attendance in two years in a row can be attributed in part to the new expansion of Baitur-Rahman Mosque featuring a newly built spacious Ansārullāh Hall in the basement and an equally spacious Hall located on the 2nd floor of the Baitur-Rahman Mosque. Both halls easily accommodated all activities of Ijtimā’ and Shūrā with hall on the second floor serving as the Ijtimā’ Gah, and Ansārullāh Hall was used as hospitality (Ziafat) area. The original Mosque prayer areas were used for Prayers and accommodation. The indoor sports activities took place in the basement area of the Mosque and outdoor sports activities were held in the outside grounds in beautiful sunny weather.
Among the prominent features of the Ijtimā’ and Majlis Shūrā were opening and closing sessions, educational, and sports competitions, Talqīn-i-‘Amal sessions related to Tablīgh and Tarbiyat, an interactive workshop on health, and “Father to Son” session with Sadr Majlis Khuddāmul-Ahmadiyya. Following are some of the highlights of the various Ijtimā’ events:
The opening session of the Ijtimā’ started right after Friday prayers with the recitation of the Holy Qur’ān. Sadr Majlis Ansārullāh, Dr. Wajeeh Bajwa, then led Ansār in recitation of the Ansār pledge which was followed by recitation of an Urdu poem from Durr-i-Samīn. Sadr Majlis Ansārullāh welcomed all Ansār members and set some ground rules for Ijtimā’. He especially requested all Ansar members to cooperate with the organizers and requested organizers to start and end all the events on time. He also conveyed prayers for the success of the Ijtimā’ sent by the Khalifatul-Masīh V (ayyadahullahu ta‘ala binasrihil-‘aziz). He then invited Missionary in charge, Imam Naseem Mahdi for the inaugural address. Imam Naseem Mahdi, in his address, talked about why disciples of Jesus (peace be on him) were mentioned in the verse Nahnu Ansarullah, instead of disciples of Muhammad (peace and blessings be on him) in spite of the fact that the disciples of Muhammed (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) were much superior in status than the disciples of Jesus (peace be on him). He reasoned that because this was going to happen again in the later days when the disciples of Hadrat Promised Messiah (peace be on him) were going to be asked the same question and their answer was going to be, Nahnu Ansarulah. He further emphasized that similar sacrifices were going to be demanded in the later days – this is happening today as well when Ahmadīs all over the world are being asked to offer grand spiritual sacrifices and prove that they are helpers of Allah in winning the hearts of the people with true peace and love instead of swords and weapons. He further talked about the abundance of the true knowledge and understanding of the Holy Qur'ān given to us by the Promised Messiah (peace be on him) as a great blessing. And that this is the message which we are trying to convey to many people by reaching out through various media outlets.
After the inaugural address of Imam Naseem Mahdi, Sadr Majlis requested Imam Naseem Mahdi to conduct a question/answer (QA) session in the prayers area of the Baitur-Rahman Mosque, while the Shūrā proceedings continued at the Ijtimā’ site. That concluded the opening session of the Ijtimā’.
Majlis Shūrā proceedings took place on Friday immediately after the opening session and then continued on Saturday evening. In the Friday session, last year’s approved proposals and implementation reports were presented. New proposals that were not selected for discussion and those selected for discussion were presented to the Shūrā body. Four subcommittees were formed for deliberations on proposals that were accepted for discussion. The four subcommittees were Tablīgh, Tarbiyat, Ta'līmul-Qur'ān, and Finance. Sadr Majlis also appointed a Chairman and a Secretary for each of the subcommittees. The subcommittees met and deliberated on their respective proposals until very late on Friday night, and all committees prepared comprehensive reports summarizing the deliberations in the Saturday evening session which concluded the Shūrā proceedings.
Many educational competitions including recitation of the Holy Qur’ān, Darsul-Hadith, impromptu speech, general knowledge, and observation and recall took place during the Ijtimā’. The first three competitions on the list were individual competitions and only one Nasir from each of the twelve regions was allowed to participate. The participants delivered their best performances and judges had a hard time deciding winners. The judges offered comments as they announced the ranking positions which were very educational and beneficial for the audience. During the Impromptu speech competitions, there were many passionate and faith enhancing speeches especially on the topics of Zakat and how to get rid of Terrorism. The general knowledge competition was a team-based competition and there were a total of twelve teams, one from each region. Although only four members of each team were formally participating in this competition, practically, all of the audience took part in this competition by guessing the answers and evaluating themselves. The most beneficial outcome was that every Nasir learned something new during this session.
This year, with the Grace of Almighty Allah, there was an enthusiastic participation in the various sports competitions. As totally opposed to last year’s experience, weather remained cool and dry on all three days of the Ijtimā’ which allowed to successfully organize outdoor events. Several keen contestants vied with fellow Ansār brothers in a most congenial atmosphere. Among the indoor events, competitions were held for table tennis (singles and doubles; two age groups 55+, and below) and darts. The outdoor events included musical ball, basketball hoops, shot put, tug-of-war, horseshoe toss and volleyball. Volleyball matches were played between teams from the various regions of Majlis Ansārullāh, USA, thanks to special efforts of Regional Nazimeen. Cheering crowds provided much encouragement to many an individual and team participant.
Talqīn-i-‘Amal Session on Tarbiyat
During Saturday, in between educational and sports competitions, two Talqīn-i-‘Amal sessions took place. One session was led by Respected Missionary, Imam Shamshad Nāsir and the other was led by Imam Zafar Sarwar.
In his Talqīn-i-‘Amal session, Imam Shamshad reminded all Ansar that this is a great favor of Allah upon Ahmadī Muslims that we have accepted the Messiah of this age and through him we have the system of Khilāfat. He quoted Hadrat Khalīfatul-Masīh V (ayyadahullahu ta‘ala binasrihil-‘aziz) that the success of any system depends upon how much its followers follow the rules and regulations of that system — this, in fact, is the key of our success.In reference to the obligations of Ansār, the first and the foremost is obedience as Allah has said in the Holy Qur'ān, Sami’na Wa Ata’na and “O ye who believe! Come into submission wholly and follow not the footsteps of Satan; surely, he is your open enemy.” At the end, he quoted Hadrat Khalīfatul- Masīh V (ayyadahullahu ta‘ala binasrihil-‘aziz) again, “This is a great favor of Allah that He has given you this opportunity to accept the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings be on him) and then in this age the Promised Messiah (peace be on him), and the system of Khilāfat, which is a strong handle is in your hand, and will not break. But you must remember that if your hands loosen the grip on this handle, you will fall down”.
Imam Zafar Sarwar, in his separate Talqīn-i-‘Amal session talked about profound love, devotion, homage and submission to Allah. He requested all of us to establish profound love, rare dedication and complete and total subservience to the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings be on him).
Talqīn-i-‘Amal Session on Tablīgh
Tablīgh Talqīn-i-‘Amal segment was held on Saturday, October 9, 2010 at 2 p.m. The session started with Qā’id Tablīgh recognizing and inviting Imam Naseem Mahdi on the stage. Qā’id Nau Mubai’in Waseem Ahmad introduced two Ansār who accepted Ahmadiyyat during this year. One Nāsir was from Dallas and the other from Milwaukee. These two members then briefly addressed the Ijtimā’ gathering, sharing their feelings with the audience. Qā’id Tablīgh then went over the Qiyadat Tablīgh Plan that was given to the Zu’ama at the start of the fiscal year. Furthermore, to-date measureable results in the areas of one-on-one contacts, visits to focused areas, open houses, bookstalls and book fairs, and number of Da’īn meetings held by Majālis were reported and all Majālis were to encouraged to meet the goals set at Ansār Leadership Conference. After this, Imam Naseem Mahdi spoke on the topic of "Sīrat of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings be on him) and Muslims for Peace Campaign". He drew attention of the audience to the events of Sulh Hudaibiyya (peace accord of Hudabiyya) and mentioned the Sīrat of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be on him) prior to and during the negotiation of that agreement. He encouraged Ansār to draw motivation from the great example of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be on him) and carry out the task of Muslims for Peace campaign and convey the message of Islam to the fellow citizens. He then introduced Wasim Malik, Nā’ib Amīr, assisting in printing of these flyers and Ali Murtaza, Secretary Tablīgh Jamā‘at USA. Both these gentlemen also gave their comments encouraging the members to continue the task of Muslims for Peace campaign. Imam Naseem Mahdi used remaining thirty minutes and answered various questions from the audience pertaining to Tablīgh.
The Health Workshop was held on the last day of the Ijtimā’ at 10 am and lasted approximately one hour. The presentation was made by Dr. Tanvir Ahmad, Nā’ib Qā’id, Zihanat wa Sihhat Jismani and coordinated by Shamim Ahmad Malik, Qā’id Zihanat wa Sihhat Jismani. The topic of the presentation was the importance of Annual Health Examination. Useful information was provided on Ideal Body Weight, Blood Pressure Control, Diabetes Mellitus, Managing High Cholesterol, Vaccination, Colon Cancer Screen, Eye Examination, Screening for Osteoporosis and Prostate diseases. The 15-minute power point presentation was followed by an engaging question and answer session .Most of the discussion surrounded around balanced diet, cholesterol, diabetes and the importance of regular exercise. Time for the question and answer session was extended due to the interest shown by the audience.
The participants were referred to the Health section of the Ansār USA website for information onvarious other health topics including exercise. The PowerPoint presentation has been published on the Ansār USA website and a link was provided to all by respected Sadr Majlis after the Ijtimā’.
This inspiring presentation of Sadr Majlis Khuddāmul-Ahmadiyya, Dr. Faheem Younus Qureshi, was a continuation of his Ijtimā’ presentation from last year. Dr. Qureshi shared the results of a survey done on youth – both Atfāl and Khuddām – seeking their opinions about what they like and what they do not like about their fathers’ behavior or actions. By sharing the likes and dislikes of children, Dr. Qureshi invoked a lot of healthy and constructive comments from the audience about dos and don’ts of being a father. Dr. Qureshi invoked a healthy debate by sharing a comment by a son, “father, you smoke, I don’t like it”. Dr. Qureshi concluded his presentation with a thought provoking video in which he reminded all of us to spend time with our children when they really need us.
Ijtimā’ Closing Session
Concluding session was presided by Dr. Ahsanullah Zafar, Amīr Jamā‘at USA. Prize distribution ceremony was followed by a comprehensive annual report presented by Sadr Majlis in which he highlighted activities of Majlis Ansārullāh USA throughout the year. Sadr Majlis mentioned goals and objectives of year 2010 and outlined all activities and efforts done by Majlis Ansārullāh USA to achieve those objectives. Sadr Majlis mentioned that this year focus has been on Tarbiyat, Tablīgh and social work activities throughout the USA. He mentioned that details of these activities will be published in the annual report at the end of 2010, In Sha’ Allah. After the annual report, Amīr Jamā‘at, in his concluding comments, thanked Majlis Ansārullāh USA for their efforts on Tarbiyat, Tablīgh and social work activities. He reminded Ansār about the importance of five daily Prayers and mentioned that followers of Promised Messiah (peace be on him) have been given a unique distinction as a whole so we should really try to follow that target as individual. He further brought the attention of all Ansār to the national Mosque fund which needed to be replenished after seven million dollars in expenses on projects acquiring or renovating various mosques throughout the USA. Ijtimā' concluded with collective du‘a led by Amīr Jamā‘at USA.
At the end of Ijtimā’ report, it is important to recognize selfless efforts of Ijtimā’ team. Nazim Ijtimā’, Munawar Saqib, and all of his team members started their work much before the Ijtimā’ and continued their hard work well after the Ijtimā’ ended.
Prizes and Awards
At this point, it will not be fair if all of those who participated in various competitions held at Ijtimā’, are not recognized. Although, all of them deserve recognition and prayers, a list of ranked positions is given below.
Recitation of the Holy Qur'an
- 1st: Naeem Ullah (Philadelphia)
- 2nd: Sadaqat Ali (Milwaukee)
- 3rd: Abdul Waheed Khalid (Dallas)
- 1st: Mansoor Qureshi (Detroit)
- 2nd: Naeem Ullah (Philadelphia)
- 3rd: Mahmood Ahmed (Gerogia-SC)
- 1st: Gulzar Ahmed (South Virginia)
- 2nd: Mansoor Qureshi (Detroit)
- 3rd: Mahmood Ahmed (Gerogia-SC)
Religious and General Knowledge
- 1st: Headquarter Region (Potomac Majlis)
- 2nd: Tie between three teams from Great Lakes, South West and Headquarter Regions.
Observation and Recall
- 1st: Nadeem Kareem (Tuscon)
- 2nd: Mansoor Qureshi (Detroit)
- 1st: Maqsood Ahmed (Milwaukee)
- 2nd: Iftikhar Ahmed Sheikh (Houston Cypress)
- 3rd: Khalid Asad (Potomac)
- 1st: Masood Khan (LA East)
- 2nd: Saeed Anjum (Zion)
- 3rd: Baba Trawalley (Research Triangle)
Table Tennis Saf Awwal
- 1st: Rafi Ahmed (Brooklyn)
- 2nd: Naseem Ahmed (Detroit)
- 3rd: Hameed Naseem (Tulsa)
Table Tennis Saf Dom
- 1st: Nasir Bukhari (Detroit)
- 2nd: Lutfur Rehman (York)
- 3rd: Naseem Khan (Detroit)
Table Tennis Doubles
- 1st: Shamim Malik (Research Triangle) and Nasir Bukhari (Detroit)
- 2nd: Lutfur Rehman (York) and Fazal Qureshi (Orlando)
- 3rd: Waseem Malik (San Jose) and Mansoor Ahmad (San Jose)
Basketball Hoops Saf Awwal
- 1st: Haleem Chaudhary (Baltimore)
- 2nd: Ataul Raheem Hamid (York)
- 3rd: Tahir Khan (LA Inland)
Basketball Hoops Saf Dom
- 1st: Abdul Rehman (Rochester)
- 2nd: Mohammed Mahmood (South Virginia)
- 3rd: Mazhar Mansoor (Silver Spring)
- 1st: Muzaffar Mahmood (Detroit)
- 2nd: Zafar Khursheed (New Jersey)
- 3rd: Mubashar Ahmed (Dallas)
- 1st: Mirza Muzaffar Ahmed (Houston North)
- 2nd: Saifur Rehman (York)
- 3rd: Mansoor Ahmed (San Jose)
- 1st: Mazhar Mansoor (Silver Spring)
- 2nd: Naeem Ahmed (Fitchburg)
- 3rd: Naseem Khan (Detroit)
- 1st: Great Lakes Team
- 2nd: Central East Team
Tug of War
- 1st: North East
- 2nd: Great Lakes