On December 6, the Fourth Annual Holidays Event by York Regional Police (YRP) was held at Bruce's Mill Community Safety Village in north Toronto. Every year, YRP hosts an open-house type of holiday event to give an opportunity for the public to come and experience holidays from various faith groups. The Tabligh Committee of the Islamic Shia Ithna Ashari Jamaat of Toronto (ISIJ) was invited by YRP, and in particular Chief Armand La Barge, to participate in this year's event.
Alongside presentations on Jewish, African, and Hindu holidays, the Jaffari Islamic Center displayed a presentation concentrated on the concept of Eid. On one of the tables was a showcasing on how a Muslim family traditionally celebrates Eid: starting from Eid prayers, giving gifts to the kids, meeting up with family and friends, and of course, sharing delicious ethnic delicacies! Several short explanatory notes were put next to the display for people interested in more information.
With the Eid al-Adha celebration nearby, this was the perfect opportunity to put up a display on Hajj and its significance. The information available explained the basis of Hajj as it was started by Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him), father of the three Abrahamic faiths: Islam, Judaism and Christianity. One Shia Adhan clock, a beautiful picture depicting the congregation of millions of Muslims during Hajj, one miniature shrine, and several colorful prayer beads were among the items displayed.
The ISIJ is producing a program called "Islam in Focus", which is being aired weekly every Saturday at 10 a.m. (EST). The "Islam in Focus" crew was also on site and covered the event. The program is aired on Rogers 129, Bell Express Vu 217, and Star Choice 348, although all shows are also available through an online portal at www.jaffari.org
York Regional Police Chief Armand La Barge was also interviewed, and he expressed his sincere gratitude and appreciation for all the efforts. He also thanked the Jaffari Islamic Center and presented the Tabligh team with a certificate of participation.The imam of the Jaffari Islamic Center is CASMO's very own Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi. You may remember him as the cleric who gave Jack Layton his dhimmi clock.
In view of La Barge's "sincere gratitude and appreciation for all the efforts" of folks who think Iran's Grand Ayatollah is peachy, it's hard not to conclude that old Armand isn't exactly the sharpest tack in the box or the shrewdest judge of character.
Update: La Barge, in major suck-up mode here. (H/T sanwin)