For Press Release
Closing Statements of the 13th Annual Conference of
the Council of Shia Muslim Scholars in North America
In The Name of Allah The Beneficent The Merciful
All praise is to Allah and may His peace and blessings be upon the best of His creations, Prophet Muhammad and his progeny
The 13th Annual Conference of the Council of Shi’a Muslim Scholars in North America entitled: “Sectarian Violence: Roots, Outcome & Solutions”
The conference was held in the capital city of Washington, D.C. from 24-25 of Shawal, 1434 A.H. / September 1-2, 2013 AD. The attendees and participants included a group of scholars, preachers, university and college professors from Canada and the United States. The goal of the conference was to discuss and study the issue of the development and increase in sectarian violence, whose evils have become far-reaching, bringing attention to its dangers, defining its causes and placing practical solutions to face it and control it. The conference attendees reached the following conclusions:
Immediately ceasing any sectarian incitement, and adopting a zero tolerance policy to those who espouse, participate, and call to such behavior, using legitimate methods and within the confines of the law. Thus replacing such incitement with the policy of “And say good unto people”
Conducting regular workshops to develop and teach the religious leaders of the centers and mosques, as well as their invited speakers, how to speak in a manner that brings people closer to one another; “Call onto the way of your lord with wisdom and good advice.”
Establishing and strengthening the connection between the scholars and imams of mosques, despite their different schools of thought, through increased meetings and visits to each other’s centers, as well as, providing a platform for a mutual exchange of lectures and the leading of prayers. All if this conducted based on the principal of “lest you know one another”
Prior experiences of such conduct have proven to be effective and successful.
With respect to the internal affairs of the Council, the following scholars have been appointed as the new Crescent Moon Sighting Committee: Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi (Toronto), Shaykh Muhammad Rida al-Bagheri (Montreal), Sayyid Bassem al-Sharaa’ (Detroit), Sayyid Mahboob Mehdi Abidi Al-Najafi (Chicago), Sayyid Rashid Saberi (New York), Shaykh Muhammad Jafar Bangalorie (Miami), Sayyid Nabi Rida Abidi (San Francisco). We present our gratitude to the former committee that performed its duties with a great deal of aptitude.
In addition, the new executive committee members for the period of 2014 – 2016 are Haj Mohsen al-Dhalimi (Portland), Shaykh Mohammed Ali al-Halabi (Miami), Sayyid Rashid Saberi (New York), Shaykh Saleh Seboweh (Montreal), Dr. Khalil al-Tabatabaie (Montreal). The Council presents its gratitude to the past members of the executive committee for their years of diligent service.
The Council presents its sincere gratitude and appreciation to all those who attended, participated, and contributed to the success of this conference including the members of the Council, the beloved volunteers, and the gracious guests. In addition, the Council wishes to especially present its sincere gratitude to the delegation from the Shi’a Endowment of the government of Iraq headed by the honorable Sayyid Ammar al-Mousawi for his attendance and active participation in placing the first building blocks in establishing a collaborative relationship between the Shi’a Endowment of Iraq and the Shi’a organizations and centers of North America. The Council asks Allah Almighty to accept these efforts, blesses these achievements, and make them a cause for the truth to become apparent, for unity to be established, for brotherhood and friendship to be supported. We also ask that Allah Almighty hasten the appearance of our master al-Imam al-Mahdi (atf) to end the unrest, especially the sectarianism, such that the light of knowledge, security, safety and justice spreads to all nations. Surely Allah hears all and answers. May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon you.
The Board of Trustees
Washington D.C., The United States of America
24-25 Shawal, 1434 / September 1-2, 2013