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Ahmadiyya Muslim Community welcomes all in first Innisfil event


Dozens of people from throughout the Innisfil area gathered at town hall Monday evening as the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community came out to introduce itself.

Last year the nationwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community opened up a new chapter in Innisfil. The group already has branches established throughout Simcoe County, including in Barrie and Bradford, but is always looking to expand and grow its footprint.

A public meeting was held Monday as the group works to introduce itself to Innisfil.

"We want to make sure they understand who we are," says Ahmed Zakaria, the vice president of the Innisfil chapter. "We are an open community; we are a peace-loving community. In today's world of Islamophobia and all that, we want to make sure that everyone understands that Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is about peace [and] is about tolerance."

During Monday's meeting, pamphlets and various literature focused on the Muslim faith were available to all attendees free of charge. The goal is to combat Islamophobia through education and awareness.

The meeting was heavily focused on Ramadan, the holiest month in the Muslim faith, which starts on March 22.

"I think some misconceptions that might be there are that it is about not eating and not drinking from sunrise to sunset, but basically, it has more deeper meaning," says Zakaria. "Ramadan means we want to feel the pain when we do not eat, for that period of time, it's about feeling the pain of the suffering humanity that actually do not have food on their table."

The Ramadan time is meant to increase the amount of charity work you do by thinking of others who are less fortunate.

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