Imam Shamshad A. Nasir from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community’s Baitul Hameed Mosque in Chino was the special guest speaker at the Pomona Rotary Club’s monthly luncheon meeting January 22. The Imam was joined by Imram Jattala, founder and editor of the award-winning website AhmadiyyaTimes.com.
The Pomona Rotary Club meeting was held at the Sheraton Fairplex Conference Center and started at 12:30 pm with lunch, followed by the Club’s regular orders of business by its members. The remainder of the program consisted solely of Imam Shamshad’s presentation on the fundamentals of Islam and how they create and sustain peace in one’s personal life and in society.
About 65 Rotarians were in attendance at the luncheon. Pomona Rotary Club president Carol Wilt introduced Imam Shamshad, extolling his passion for creating mutual understanding through interfaith dialogue, public outreach and education to correct misunderstandings and misinformation about Islam.
Imam Shamshad spoke for half an hour and then answered questions from the audience for another 25 minutes. Most of the talk was dedicated to explaining the fundamental beliefs of Islam, emphasizing how each of these fundamentals work towards creating and maintaining peace.
Imam Shamshad presented examples from the life of the Prophet Muhammad to refute common misunderstandings about the religion, even among Muslims. The Imam explained that many of the criticisms against Islam are actually cultural habits or religious beliefs introduced into Islam over its 1500-year history from non-Islamic societies or religions that came into contact with Islam and Muslim rulers. This is exactly the reason God sent reformers in the past to purify Muslims and strive to remove the corruptions in their beliefs.
The latest and most important reformer in this age was the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian, India, who came in the 19th century for exactly that purpose. He started his Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in 1889 and it has since progressed and spread to more than 200 countries with tens of millions of members.
Throughout its 124-year history the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community has excelled in reforming and converting Muslims and establishing peace wherever its members reside. It is also the only Islamic community that has a spiritual leader called a Khalifa, who unites and guides the followers of the Promised Messiah in all things righteous and good. The Ahmadiyya motto is: “Love for All – Hatred for None.”
In support of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Khalifa’s desire to educate the world about the true teachings of Islam and the true life and character of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), Imam Shamshad stressed the need to respect all the religions of the world and show special reverence for their founders. In this way, people of different faiths can meet and get to know and understand each other in peace and friendship, which will eventually lead to better relations and peace between members of the world’s religions.
In light of this, Imam Shamshad presented the numerous Ahmadiyya Muslim Community’s public relations and information campaigns in the US and around the world, including “Muslims for Peace” (2010), “Muslims for Loyalty” (2011), “Muslims for Life” (2011-12), and the latest nationwide campaign, “Peace through the Messiah” (2012-13).
Through these educational and public relations efforts, tens of millions of people have been introduced to key Islamic concepts that counter and disprove stereotypes and outright false beliefs many people have about Islam and the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
The Imam also took time to answer questions from the audience about extremism in the name of Islam, women’s rights in Islam and Islam’s stress on loyalty to the country.
It is noteworthy that the invitation to speak at the Pomona Rotary Club came about as a result of one of Imam Shamshad’s frequent newspaper articles, published in local papers, which was read by the previous president of the Pomona Rotary Club. This resulted in the Imam being invited to speak at one of the Club’s upcoming monthly meetings.
At the conclusion of the meeting, “Peace through the Messiah” flyers were distributed to all the attendees, along with free copies of “The Muslim Sunrise” magazine, which contained many different articles on the life and character of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). The pleasant interaction generated enormous goodwill for the faith of Islam and the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
A new outreach campaign by the Ahmadiyya Community provides free copies of the biography of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to all who are interested to learn more about him and the religion of Islam. To receive your free copy of the book “Life of Muhammad” please call the Chino Mosque at 909-627-2252 if you live in the Southern California area, or you can call Toll-Free 1-800-WHY-ISLAM to request a free copy. You can also read the book online at the Ahmadiyya Islam website (Alislam.org) by typing in this URL address: www.alislam.org/library/books/Life-of-Muhammad.pdf
For more information about Islam or the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, please call the Baitul Hameed Mosque at 909-627-2252 or Imam Shamshad directly at 909-636-8332 or via Email at: Shamshadanasir@Gmail.com, or visit the Community’s websites at: www.Alislam.org or www.TheChinoMosque.org.
About the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community:
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is a dynamic, reformist and fast-growing international movement within Islam. Founded in 1889 in Qadian, India by Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1835-1908), the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is now established in over 200 countries with membership numbering in the tens of millions. Their motto is: “Love for All – Hatred for None.”
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community propagates the true teachings of Islam and the message of peace and tolerance through a worldwide twenty-four hour satellite television channel (watch online at: www.MTA.tv), the Internet (Alislam.org) and print (Islam International Publications). It has been at the forefront of disaster relief in the United States and worldwide through an independent charitable organization, Humanity First.
About Imam Shamshad A. Nasir:
Imam Shamshad A. Nasir currently serves as the Missionary In-Charge of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community for the southwest region of the United States. He has devoted his life to serving Islam since 1973 after graduating from Jamia Ahmadiyya, an intensive, multi-lingual, seven-year missionary training seminary in Rabwah, Pakistan.
Throughout his service to the Faith, he has continuously promoted the cause of peace through interfaith dialogs, peace symposiums and humanitarian and civic out-reach, and by engaging in the free exchange of ideas in the available media.