Rasa – Hujjat al-Islam Ramazani-Gilani said, “When the people in the Western and in Germany see a Shi’ah cleric, they truly respect them and I have witnessed this respect, not only in Germany, but also in other countries.”
RNA – In an interview with Hujjat al-Islam Dr. Reza Ramazani-Gilani, the former imam of the Islamic Centre of Hamburg, Germany, said, “When the people in the West and in Germany see a Shi’ah cleric, they truly respect them and I have witnessed this respect, not only in Germany, but also in other countries, such as France, Italy, Belgium and elsewhere. This respect for these clerical clothes and the fact that these people are the propagators of religion is witnessed and exists.”
The Iranian cleric said that the leaders of other religions are justified in the approximation between religions and respect it and said, “Their leaders believe that interfaith dialogue is essential not only for knowing each other but can also be used for discussing other topics that may not be believed by others.”
He added, “Hamburg is a place for dialogue and approximation, and there are different views and voices there. It’s important to be present as an active thinker, not passive. Therefore, the presence of the various voices in this city is very important.”
Hujjat al-Islam Ramazani-Gilani noted that Friday prayers have been held at the Islamic Centre of Hamburg for the past 58 years. Imams of the mosque have included the late Hujjat al-Islam Dr. Mohaqeqqi-Lahiji and Shahid Beheshti and for this reason, this centre holds the most important Friday prayers for Shi’ahs in Europe.
His Eminence said that because of the fact that the Islamic Centre of Hamburg was first the Shi’ah mosque founded due to the demand of believers and was established on the order of the main source of emulation at that time, the late Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Hoseyn Boroujerdi, the Islamic Centre of Hamburg has a special position.
During a meeting at Hamburg’s Atlantic Hotel in 1953, a group of Iranian residents of Germany discussed the need to establish their own religious centre and sent a letter to Ayatollah Borujerdi asking him for help. His Eminence agreed with the plan and donated 100,000 rials to the centre. Construction began in 1960 and it was completed in 1965.
Hujjat al-Islam Ramazani-Gilani stated the special position led the Islamic Centre of Hamburg to be an axis in Europe, not only for Shi’ahs but for all Muslims. Therefore, in the same mosque, the Sunnis and Shi’ahs pray their Friday prayers together. If you look at pictures of the late Shahid Beheshti in Hamburg, you will see many Sunnis participating in the ceremonies and prayers.
In regard to the topics discussed in Friday prayer sermons, he said, “We devote part of the sermon to religious and spiritual issues and the other part to the topics related to the Islamic world and the wider world. For example, in a recent sermon, we cited the causes of increased warfare in the world and provided information about elections, along with other issues.”