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Ahmadi Muslim students organize Holy Quran Exhibition, Lecture on Islam at UCI

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The Ahmadiyya Muslim Students Association (AMSA) at the University of California Irvine Campus has actively promoted the true teachings of Islam for the past decade.

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AMSA members have been arranging events for years and, the community says, they have done an excellent job in establishing a strong Ahmadi Muslim presence at the campus.

Harris Ahmed is the current president of AMSA at UC Irvine.

On November 8th, 2012, AMSA members arranged a Quran Exhibition during the day and a Lecture with a Q&A session in the evening on the issues of ‘Blasphemy and Apostasy’ in Islam.

The Quran exhibition, held in front of the school’s main entrance in between the main flagpoles at the school, lasted for 5 hours, from 11 am to 4 pm.

Several members from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Women Association as well as members from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association joined with AMSA members to manage the booth.

There were at least 5 people present, attending to visitors at all times.

The exhibit included the Holy Qurans, books on Islam, flyers and pamphlets on varying subjects of faith related subjects.

The organizers packaged the Introduction to Islam and Introduction to Ahmadiyya Muslim Community pamphlets along with a flyer for the evening lecture and handed those to over 600 people whom they engaged in conversation about introduction to Islam.

The organizers also gave away free copies of the Holy Qur'an upon request.

Attended by over 80 people, the evening lecture and the following Q&A session went on for one hour and Mr. Monas Chaudry, vice president of the of Los Angeles-South chapter of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community was the guest speaker.

Several club presidents along with their representatives attended the lecture. Those in attendance included, Religious Studies president, Muslim Students Union president, Christian Club presidents, Atheist Club president, Ex-Muslim/Critics of IslamClub president, and representatives from Ahle Bait Society and Sikh student club.

There were also other Sunni, Shia, Atheist and Christian students in attendance who had no formal club affiliations.

Mr. Chaudry was engaged by several individuals in one-to-one conversations after the formal program was over.

Relating sentiments of the attendees, AMSA president, Harris Ahmed, said many were impacted by the spirit of the event and the true message of Islam.

Harris Ahmed quoted an Ex-Muslim who said: "I wish all Muslims were Ahmadi, and that Islam was just Ahmadiyya.”

"Ahmadiyyat is Islam in its pristine form," Ahmed says he responded to the ex-Muslim.

Ahmed explained that the ex-Muslim man is a troubled person from Iran, who had suffered at the hands of the Iranian government, and the maltreatment caused him to renounce Islam.

“He is a staunch enemy and opponent of Islam now and he has a permanent table on campus, denigrating and insulting Islam throughout the year,” Ahmed said.

A non-Ahmadi Muslim who has moved away from his faith expressed the experience caused him to think about becoming a practicing Muslim again.

"Coming to this really wanted me to go back [to Islam]," he told Ahmed.

A resident of Rancho Cucamonga, California, and a third year student at UC Irvine, Harris Ahmed is a member of the Inland Empire chapter of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.