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Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih V said that todays Friday sermon would be based on accou nts of some companions of the

Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) illustrating t he ardent keenness with which they travelled to keep his company. Hadhrat Mian Zahoor ud din sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates tha t once he felt spontaneous urge to visit Qadian. He mentioned this to someone. H e did not have any money to meet the travel expense. The person gave him Rupee 1 saying that was all they had. Mian sahib mentioned it to another person and he agreed to travel with him. They both travelled till Batala from where they walke d to Qadian and were extremely gratified to meet the Promised Messiah (on whom b e peace). Reminiscing, he relates how delightful was the time of the Promised Me ssiah (on whom be peace), when once they reached in his presence the rest of the world did not matter anymore. Overjoyed by meeting the Promised Messiah (on who m be peace), they stayed for a few days and had the honour of offering Salat beh ind the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). He relates his good fortune that it was through Gods grace weak people like him were born in the blessed era. Hadhrat Haji Muhammad Musa sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates tha t it was his routine for many years to keep a bicycle at Batala railway station with someone. Each Friday he would board a train from Lahore to Batala and from Batala ride the cycle to Qadian to attend Friday Prayer and then make the return trip to Lahore. Hadhrat Ghulam Ghos sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates that he ha d done his Baiat through letter but in 1901 he went to Qadian to take Baiat in per son. Once in Qadian, he asked Maulwi Abdul Kareem sahib (may Allah be pleased wi th him) for a Wazifa (formulaic prayer or routine). He told him the Wazifa was t o visit Qadian frequently. This made Ghos sahib think to build a house in Qadian where his family would live and each time he came home on leave he would come t o Qadian. He was in East Africa at the time and sent money to Maulwi Abdul Karee m sahib (may Allah be pleased with him) for the purpose of building a house. How ever, on his return visit Maulwi sahib returned his money and apologised for not having had the opportunity to build his house. At the time Maulwi sahib spoke i n most positive terms about the Jamaat acquiring substantial properties in Qadian . This came to pass through the blessings of the Promised Messiah (on whom be pe ace). Hadhrat Mian Zahoor ud din sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates tha t he realised the enormity of the matter if Mirza sahib was truthful and he did no t accept him. He mentioned this thought to his cousin and told him that he was d etermined to visit Qadian. The cousin told him not to mention it to anyone but h e too would come along. They both left early in the morning by train. From the t rain station they took a horse drawn carriage and reached Qadian at Zuhr time. M asjid Mubarak was very small in size in those days. About half a dozen people sa t in there and Mian sahib carefully looked at each one of them but felt none of them appeared to be the person he sought. Fifteen minutes later Hadhrat Maulana Nur ud din (may Allah be pleased with him) arrived. Seeing him, Mian sahib felt he was an esteemed man and stood up. Hadhrat Maulana Nur ud din (may Allah be pl eased with him) realised his misunderstanding and told him to keep sitting as Ha dhrat sahib was to arrive shortly. Soon, the adjoining window opened and the Pro mised Messiah (on whom be peace) entered the mosque. It was as if the sun had ri sen to its zenith. Mian sahib relates that the presence/countenance of the Promi sed Messiah (on whom be peace) surpassed his expectations and he felt complete s atisfaction after seeing him. Hadhrat Sheikh Abdul Kareem sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates th at he became an Ahmadi in 1903 through someone who had come to Karachi. In 1904 he visited Lahore and when at the mosque for Friday Prayers he heard that the Pr omised Messiah (on whom be peace) was about to arrive. The Friday sermon was del ivered by Maulwi Abdul Kareem sahib who also led the Salat. Sheikh sahib relates

that he went about the place in a frenzied state to somehow meet the Promised M essiah (on whom be peace) when suddenly Dr Yaqub Baig sahib took him by the hand and pulled him to the front row of Salat. He found himself next to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). During the qadah posture of Salat he felt overwhelme d at the thought of his sins while his shoulder touched the shoulder of the Prom ised Messiah (on whom be peace) and he wept. Seeing him sobbing, [after the Sala t]the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) patted him on the back and reassured h im. Sheikh sahib further relates that he went along when the Promised Messiah (o n whom be peace) returned to Qadian. Soon after he had to go to Gurdaspur and Sh eikh sahib followed him there as well. He writes that the Promised Messiah (on w hom be peace) said that people say it is sufficient for their salvation that the y have seen the Promised Messiah and taken Baiat, whereas Thee alone do we worship and Thee alone do we implore for help (1:5) is the essence which can grant salva tion. He said he had only come to show the way. Hadhrat Sahib Din sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates that it was probably in 1904 when he heard that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) was coming to Lahore. He went to the railway station with others, having prepared a horse carriage for the Promised Messiahs (on whom be peace) transport. Once the P romised Messiah (on whom be peace) was seated in the carriage, following custom of the time, young men unfastened the horses from the carriage, wishing to pull the carriage themselves. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said he had com e so that man could progress and reach high stations and not to make man pull ca rriages like animals. Hearing this, the plan was abandoned, and the horses were re-fastened to the carriage. Din sahib says he stood at the back of the carriage with an umbrella over the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) and felt immense honour in doing this. Hadhrat Choudhry Ghulam Rasool Basra sahib (may Allah be pleased with him):He re lates that at the time of Jalsa of 1907 he heard that on the Thursday the Promis ed Messiah (on whom be peace) was going to go for an early morning walk. It was traditional at the time that when there was a crowd, a circle of hands used to b e formed around the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). Choudhry sahib said to his friends that on the morning of the walk they should join the walk and if God enabled them, form a circle of hands around the Promised Messiah (on whom be pe ace) so that they could have a close look at him. After morning Prayer everyone waited out in the street for the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) to appear. No one knew which direction he would go to for the walk and there was much excit ement in the air. After a while it was said that he would go towards the north a nd Choudhry sahib and his friends became ready to form the circle of hands. Soon , they saw the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) appear with a huge crowd and the crowd simply trampled past them. Later, after the walk the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) rested under a tree and shook hands with everyone. At this ti me the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said that he had been foretold by God that multitudes of people would come to visit him and he was not be weary of th em and he was not to tire of meeting them. Hadhrat Dr Umer Din sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates that he so craved to shake hands with the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) that he ofte n made his way through jostling crowds to do this but he never felt satiated. Hadhrat Dr Abdullah sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates that once he was about to travel to Qadian from Batala. An elderly blind person was also a bout the make the journey. Dr. sahib offered him a ride on his carriage as there was space, but the elderly person declined the offer and said he had the money to travel on his own. He relates that apart from the obvious display of dignity this account also shows that people found frequent visits to Qadian as life-givi ng. Hadhrat Chiragh Din sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates that [prio

r to his Baiat] when Hakeem Ahmad Din sahib was about to go and see the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) at Lahore, he made fun of him. Hakeem sahib expressed surprise at him poking fun at him. This embarrassed Chiragh Din sahib and also mollified him. When Hakeem sahib asked him to join him on the travels, he did. H e relates he had no intention of Baiat at the time. When they reached the place o f residence of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) they learned that he was not feeling very well. A huge crowd had gathered outside. The Promised Messiah ( on whom be peace) came to a window so that people could see him. Chiragh sahib r elates that when he saw the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) he knew that fac e could not be of a liar. Subsequently, he took Baiat. Hadhrat Malik Barkat ullah sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates tha t he was informed via post in 1905 that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace w as travelling to Delhi and would pass a certain train station at a specific time . It was Malik sahibs duty to inform the Jamaat. He and friends travelled 30 miles to reach the railway station. Local Ahmadis had arranged food for them. The exp ected train came and went and it was found out that the Promised Messiahs travel date had changed. Everyone was extremely saddened. Malik sahib relates that earl ier on he had travelled long distances overnight [in anticipation of seeing the Promised Messiah] and after the news of change of schedule he could barely walk a few steps. Hadhrat Munshi Qazi Mahboob Alam sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relat es that during his adolescence when he was a student of class/year/grade 8, he u sed to listen to the discussions between Hanafi and Wahhabi Muslims. He would he ar people refer to Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (on whom be peace) as Kafir in the Wahhabi discussions, so he was inclined to find out for himself. He sought some information from an Ahmadi and the Ahmadi asked him to do Istikhara. Having lea rned the specific prayer for Istikhara, Qazi sahib performed the prayer. When he went to sleep after making the prayer he saw a dream. In the dream he is told t o sit up because the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) is ab out to come. He saw someone in pristine white clothes hold the Promised Messiah by the hand and stand him up and said something in Arabic. He then left and the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) pointed to himself and said something in Pun jabi which meant that this person has been made Khalifa by God and was should be recognised as the Mahdi. Qazi sahib relates that next morning rather than go to school, he went to Qadian. On the way there when he arrived at Batala he stoppe d to offer his Salat. People asked him who he was and where was he going. When h e told them, they started hurling verbal abuse at the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) and when Qazi sahib demonstrated his firm resolve to go to Qadian they expelled him from the mosque. They chased him to the bus stop to deter him from going to Qadian. They told him that as he was a student they would arrange for him to be in the pupillage of someone called Bara Mian and would also arrange hi s accommodation. Qazi sahib declined their offer and although evening had fallen , he started his walk to Qadian. As the way was unfamiliar he lost track and end ed up in the wrong village. He was offered place to sleep in the mosque there. H owever, he woke up very early and asked to be shown the way. The person there sh owed him the way and Qazi sahib started his walk to Qadian. He offered Fajr Sala t on his way and arrived at Qadian after sunrise. Once in Qadian he asked for the esteemed Mirza sahib and was shown an elderly pe rson (Mirza Nizam Din) who sat on a divan smoking a Hookah his body still wet fr om bathing. Qazi sahib felt revulsion and very disappointed and turned back. On his way he met Hamid Ali sahib who asked him who he was and who did he want to m eet. He said he had come from Lahore and had come to see Mirza sahib but now he was returning home. Hamid Ali sahib told him he had not seen the Mirza sahib tha t he had come to see and offered to arrange a meeting for him. Qazi sahib felt h uge relief. Hamid Ali sahib asked him to write a note saying he was a student fr om Lahore and had to return the same day and wished to meet with the Promised Me ssiah. In reply to his note the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) sent a note

saying he was in the process of writing a book at the time and was concentrating on the subject of the book, if he came to meet Qazi sahib, it was possible he w ould lose concentration. This did not satisfy Qazi sahib and he wrote another no te pleading that he had travelled in the early hours to be there and wished to m eet right away. On this, the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said that Qazi sahib should be asked to sit in Masjid Mubarak. Fifteen minutes later the Promis ed Messiah (on whom be peace) sent for him. Qazi sahib relates that he saw the P romised Messiah (on whom be peace) standing on the other side of the street look ing exactly as he had appeared in the dream. He walked towards the Promised Mess iah (on whom be peace) while the Promised Messiah came towards him. Qazi sahib i nstantly knew he was the holy person from his dream and was truthful, he embrace d the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) and started sobbing. He relates he has no idea why he sobbed. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) soothed him and when he calmed down asked him where had he come from. Qazi sahib said he was fro m Lahore. When asked why had he come he said he had come to see the Promised Mes siah. He was asked if he had any specific need and he replied no, he only wanted to see him. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said some people came to se e him to ask for specific prayers, did Qazi sahib too have such a need? Qazi sah ib replied that he did not have any need. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace ) was very pleased to hear this and said Mubarak and then added that it was very b eneficial to come to people of God without any need. Hadhrat Malik Ghulam Hussein sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He relates t hat he did not have the money to travel to Qadian. He only had Rupees 2 on him. He travelled till Jhelum on foot and then felt he could carry on walking. Along the way he met some soldiers who had horses with them. He asked them to hand one horse to him but the soldiers said he was from the district of Gujrat and they feared he may steal their horses. He told them he was not from Gujrat but they w ere not convinced. Malik sahib stayed and walked with them. For a while they let him ride one of the horses. They fed him and he also spent two nights en route with them. When they reached Lahore their ways parted. Train service from Lahore was available but Malik sahib continued to carry on foot. He reached another to wn from where he could have caught a train but when he found out there was some wait before the arrival of the train he restarted his journey on foot. This happ ened at yet another train station. Eventually Malik sahib reached Amritsar. He s tayed the night in Amritsar with an acquaintance and in the morning caught the t rain to Batala. From Batala he walked to Qadian. He stayed in Qadian for a few d ays. When leaving he told the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) that as a chil d he used to pray O God make us soldiers in the time of the Mahdi, he also related how he had walked to Qadian. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) told him th at he had been very courageous. When asked Malik sahib said his only skill was b read (roti) making. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) asked him to put his name down and said he would be asked to come and help when required. Thus are the accounts of the companions of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peac e) who keenly wished to see him and endured many hardships for this. In return t hey were blessed with beneficence. May God enable us to not merely enjoy these a ccounts but may each of these accounts be a source of enhancing our faith.