By Imam Shamshad Nasir, Detroit USA
Thanksgiving is a national celebration here in the USA. Irrespective of its historical background, it has become a federal holiday that provides opportunity to millions to travel for a long weekend to be with their near and dear ones. On such an auspicious occasion, it is indeed heartening that numerous organizations endeavor on a mass scale to provide the underprivileged and homeless with meals, gifts and a sense that they are not forgotten on this great event of the nation. For their efforts, such humanitarian organizations deserve our gratitude and prayers .
At the same time, I must also express that I owe an obligation to offer thanks to God Almighty for having being part of this country. I, as an Ahmadi Muslim, ( who believe that according to the foretold of Prophet Muhammad peace be on him, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad the Massieh has come in this time) have complete religious freedom in this nation. I can offer my five daily prayers, go to a mosque, give the ritual call to worship, recite from the Islamic holy book Quran, propagate my faith’s message to others, and importantly call myself a Muslim. I have the right to wear what I want and greet others with the Islamic salutation, Assalamo Alaikum, (‘peace be unto you’). Long story short, I am not bound by law in practising any part of my faith at all, I have complete freedom of faith here, infect this is the Islamic teachings, and unfortunately in some Muslim countries this freedom of faith is totally ignored rather people are punished if they practice their Faith.
This propels me to thank not just God Almighty, who in his word has commanded believers to : Offer worship to God and be among the grateful (Bal lillah fa bud wa kun minashakireen Holy Quran 39:67), but also express gratitude and thanks to the authority of this land that offers me the security and peace to practice my faith. So what I’m going to do on this day of celebration of thanksgiving:
1) will offer my dawn prayer which is called Tahajud prayer and 5 daily prayers in the Mosque.
2) will recite Holy Quran
3) will help poor and needy person
4) will pray for the authority of this country as well for the whole nation
5) will visit my friends
6) will pray for the sick, regardless of their religion
7) will visit graveyard and will pray for those who are buried there.
8) will write a letter to my spiritual leader head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community to pray for all of us and specially for the people of this country.
I thus offer you to also visit our mosque to observe our prayer, listen teaching from the Quran and learn about the life and accomplishments of our holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him). We will entertain friendly all questions – easy or challenging – without any hesitation. Therefore you are welcome to visit us.
You may call me at 909-636-8332 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org You may also come meet me at the Ahmadiyya Muslim Center located at 1730 West Auburn Rd, Rochester Hills, 48309. I look forward seeing you. God be with you and
happy Thanksgivings To you all.