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MUNA Convention 2018 held in Philadelphia

  MUNA Convention 2018 held in Philadelphia with participation of 10,000 Bangladeshi-Americans

Philadelphia: With the call of following the ideals of the greatest world leader of all times and messenger of mankind for establishing peace in the current world crisis, MUNA Convention 2018 was held 8 in Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia on July 7 and 8. The objective of the Convention was to invite of Islam, the religion of peace among the people irrespective of race and religion. The main theme of the Convention was “Muhammad: The Messenger of Peace and Mercy.” The universal approach of Prophet Muhammad (PUBH) has been highlighted in the speeches of local and foreign Islamic thinkers, ulemas and experts participated in the convention. They said, Prophet Muhammad did not come in the world only for the Muslims, rather as a universal ideal leader he came for the whole mankind. Therefore, it is our moral and social responsibility to disseminate the ideals of Prophet Muhammad among all. Islam should be kept limited only to the Muslims. The speakers said, the message of peace of Islam must be spread among all. The convention underscored the need of true guidelines in accordance with Islamic ideals for the youths.

The two-day convention was attended by both male and female of all ages numbering over 10,000 from different state of America. The significant thing of the convention was the participation of new generation in great number. They were very active and helping the participants in finding out the right venues of different events. The Convention Center and the adjacent areas of the Philadelphia city turned into a little Bangladesh during the convention. The attendees were very satisfied as the organizers worked hard in arranging a well-disciplined convention. Earlier, MUNA Convention was held in different venues of New York City for a day, which was very annoying to both the organizers and the participants. This year MUNA broke the tradition of holding a day-long convention and arranged the convention for two days. Starting from selection of a convention center nearer to New York and arranging accommodation in hotels for 10,000 people was a huge task for MUNA executives. Except some minor things so far all went well.

The participants started arriving in Philadelphia in the afternoon on Friday, July 6 and after checked-in to their respective hotels completed the registration formalities at the Convention Center. The organizers welcomed them at a simple ceremony in the evening. The inaugural session was held in the main auditorium at the third floor of the Convention Center in the morning of Saturday, July 7 with welcome speech by the chairman of the convention committee Abu Ahmed Nuruzzaman. Moderated by Harun Or Rashid, the session was addressed among others, by MUNA National President Imam Delwar Hossain, Imam Sadeed Muhammad, Dr. Mizan Mokhtar, Abdullah Zaber, Dr Ruhul Amin. In the beginning recitation from the holy Quran was presented by Hafeez Nurul Islam. At the end of the session artistes of Ummah Shipli Gosthi presented Islamic songs.

The second session on “Prophet Muhammad: Guide For Humanity” was moderated by Abdullah Al-Arif and spoke among others prominent Islamic thinkers Imam Mahmud Zakaria, Barrister Hamid Hossain Azad, Sheikh Muhammad Fakhruddin, Shaykh Mahmudul Hassan. In the afternoon session a seminar on “Prophetic Interactions: Overcoming the Adversity” was moderated by Anisur Rahman and addressed by Dr. Mirza Galib, Oussama Jamal, Nayeem Beg ans Shyakh Yasir Birjas. Besides, two more seminars were held in the first day of the convention on topics: “Ibadah: As Understood and Practiced by the Early Muslims,” and “Prophet Muhammad: The Messenger of Peace and Mercy” which were spoke by Imam fayek Uddin, Javed Siddiqui, Imam Hasan Akbar, Asif Hirani, Azhar Aziz, Imam Delwar Hossain, Dr. Altaf Hossain, Imam Shuhab Web and Imam Siraj Wahhaj. These sessions were moderated respectively by Ahmed Abu Ubayda and Abu Samihah Sirajul Islam.

The youth conference on July 7 was held at the Terrace Ballroom of the Convention Center and the topics of discussion were “The Essence of Islam and Understanding Prophetic Legacy”, “Battling the Whisper from Within”, Purification of Heart”, “In Pursuit of Protecting the Dignity”, Prophet Muhammad: The Living Quran”, Service to Humanity: The Prophetic Tradition”, and “In Pursuit of Freedom: Justice and Dignity.” These sessions were addressed by eminent Islamic experts and academics including Dr. Zahid Bukhari, Imam Siraj Wahhaj, Masuma Sultana Mili, Ahmed Khalid, Yaser Birjas, Dr. Suzy Ismail, Shaykh Majed Mahmoud, Shaykh Hassan Akbar, Ustadha Yasmin Mogahed, Dunia Shuaib, Abu Samihah Sirajul Islam, Maqsood Ahmed, Dr. Shariful Islam, SM Rasheduzzaman, Dr Nakibur Rahman, Nihad Awad, Khalil Meek. During the course of discussions cultural show was performed by Ummah Shilpi Gosthi, which was moderated by Dr. Ataul Osmani. Besides, artiste Ehsan Tahmid of Labbayek Nashid Group of United Kingdom also presented Islamic songs.

In the morning session of second day of MUNA convention a group of prominent Islamic thinkers spoke on “Empowering families Through Divine Guidance.” They include Imam Rafique Ahmed, Mufti Ismail, hamid Hossain Azad, Shaykh Md. Fakhruddin. The second session on “Prophetic Methods of Overcoming the Challenges” was deliberated by Imam Hasan Akbar, Dr. Mirza Galib and Dr Altaf Hossain. The session was moderated by Fathema Siddiqua Sornaly and Khawla Rahman. Three other sessions of the day were on subjects: “Faith and Action: The Road to Success”, “Today’s Youth: Tomorrow’s Leader”, Increasing Love and Getting Closer to Allah”, were addressed among others by Hafiz Zakir Ahmed, Dr. Nakibur Rahman, Imam Abdullah Jaber, Dr Syedur Rahman Chowdhury, Imam Abul Faizullah. In the concluding day of the convention a legal session was arranged which was moderated by Barrister Mohammad Mostafa Esq and addressed by Ahmed Solaiman, Mohammad A. Aziz and Sumaiya Khalique.

On the occasion of MUNA Convention 2018, a colorful souvenir was published which contained a number of articles written by scholars, academics and Islamic thinkers, messages from elected officials and MUNA executives. The souvenir was edited by Haroon Or Rashid and published jointly by Niaz Makhdum and Mominul Islam Mazumdar.

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Children from the New York Zones participated in the talent show, including Brooklyn, Bronx, Jamaica, Astoria and Jackson Heights, and from Virginia in the East Zone. The participants displayed their artistic talents through the Art Competition, sang Islamic Nasheeds and performed plays.

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