Notes: Muslim Ceremony in London

The Light (Pakistan), 15th May 1922 Issue (Vol. 1, No. 11, pp. 1–2)

We are exceedingly glad to know that our dear brother, Mr. Khalid Sheldrake, whom we have the pleasure of knowing very intimately during our stay in England, has been recently blessed with a son. We heartily congratulate Mr. and Mrs. Khalid on this happy occasion.

Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din, Imam of the Mosque, Woking, visited the nursing home and performed the Azan [call to prayer] ceremony, of which the following account will be read with interest:

“On Friday, the 7th April, Haji Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din, Imam of the Mosque at Woking, and leader of the Moslems [Muslims] in the British Isles, visited a private nursing home in East Dulwich [South East London, England] accompanied by Haji Abdul Muhey Arab. Their turbans provided some interest in the neighbour­hood.

The occasion was the usual Moslem [Muslim] cere­mony after the birth of a child. It is not quite the same as the Christian rite of christening which marks the infant a child of God, as the Moslem [Muslim] religion teaches that every child is a member of God’s family and needs no baptism.

After greetings to the mother, Mrs Ghazia Khalid Sheldrake, wife of Dr Khalid Sheldrake, the well-known writer and lecturer, Haji Arab Sahib softly repeated in the ears of the baby:

Allahu Akbar, Ashhadu an la ilaha-il-Allah-wa Ashhadu anna Mahommedan Rasula Ullah.
Hayy alass a lat
Hayy alal Falah
Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar
La ilaha il Ullah.’

This was followed by a silent prayer that Allah would bless the baby and his parents.

After the ceremony, accompanied by Dr Khalid Sheldrake, the assembly returned to the Afghan Embassy for dinner.

Congratulations have been sent by His Excellency Reshid Pasha, the Turkish Minister; the Afghan Minister; the American Embassy, Paris; the Persian Minister; the Palestine Arab Delegation; Lord Headley; and many others.

Both mother and the boy are progressing splendidly.”