A Joint Celebration

The coinciding of Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation alongside Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Diamond Jubilee involves a fortuitous convergence not only of events, but also of ideals. The deep and abiding ties between the Imamat and Canada, built on a solid foundation of respect for diversity, compassion, justice, and human dignity, are sources of im- measurable pride for us Ismailis.

The Ismaili Muslim community first established itself in Canada when this country had just celebrated its first century of Confederation. Posed against the timeline of 14 centuries of the Muslim faith, the story of the Shia Ismaili Muslim community in Canada is not an insignificant one. In that relatively short period, members of the Jamat have assumed leading and crit- ical roles in civil society, private enterprise, academia, and public service. From humble roots as newcomers, we have seen the emergence of a community whose threads have become integral to the vibrant fabric of Canadian society. It is reason to be proud.

Looking forward to the next half-century, I have no doubt that this trend will continue and, given the enormous talent and vision I see around me, accelerate at unprecedented rates. As Canadians we must put our energies to participating in shaping the Canada of tomorrow – a leader on the world stage – a country that is a passionate advocate for a more peaceful and understand- ing world, one that embraces a cosmopolitan ethic and affords every individual the opportunity to thrive.

Malik Talib
President
Aga Khan Council for Canada