(Life Patron and Spiritual Director of Refai Thareeq Association of Sri Lanka)

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmathullahi Wabarakathuh.

Alhamdulillah, All praise be to Allah for having given me this opportunity to express a few words towards the progress of the Rifai Thareeqa and the Rifai Thareeq Association of Sri Lanka Inc. in its 139 years history in Sri Lanka.

The Rifai Thareeqa is a path of life, founded by the great Saint of Islam, Sulthanul Arifeen Seyyed Ahamed Kabir Al Rifai, who led a very pious life based on the teachings of the Holy Quran and the examples of the Holy Prophet Muhhamed (Sal). The Rifai Thareeq Association was established in Sri Lanka by my fore-fathers in 1877 who by their presence here continued to serve the muslim community through their spiritual guidance and religious practices with the establishment of mosques, religious and educational institutes in many parts of the country.

The Rifayia Thakiya at Rifai Thangal Lane, Colombo 12 where the Rifai Thareeq Association head quarters is located, plays a leading role in propagating Islamic and thareeqa activities by conducting rathibs, bayyans along with the annual Rifai kandoori in commemoration of Saint Sulthanul Arifeen Ahamed Kabir Al Rifai.

The Muhiyyadeen Jumma Masjid at Kapuwatte first built 128 years ago, was reconstructed and opened last year is a centre for religious activities in the Southern Province, with its new extension Alhamdulillah, large numbers can attend the masjid for daily and Jummah prayers. The Masjid also conducts all religious with also the active participation of the youth in the area.

The Rifai Thareeq Associations first started the Rifayiya Ladies Arabic College at Weligama in order to coach students in Arabic and Islamic studies side by side with secular education is a rare commodity, and a few that are available are mainly relegated to boys. Hence, the necessity to extend this facility to Muslim girls has been a long felt need of the community. This was the main theme of the deliberations that followed the 125th Anniversary Celebrations of the Refai Thareeq Association, held in Colombo, in the year 2002.

To translate this idea into action, I summoned a few of our well wishers and inspired them on the necessity to commence working on this project immediately. The positive response, encouragement and voluntary assistance received from them helped us to set up a Ladies Arabic College at Kapuwatte in a rented premises in the year 2003, with barely 20 students. Some of them volunteered to meet the day today running expenses, to whom my sincere thanks and appreciation belong. Alhamdulillah, we have by now celebrated the third Convocation of the college in 2015 with 22 of our Moulaviyyas having completed their course of studies and qualified at the examinations conducted bt the Department of Examinations, Sri Lanka and was conferred their Al-Alima titles. It is also hearting to note that some of the students have gained admission to the State Universities in Sri Lanka.

Consequent to the aspirations of many of our well wishers, we have adopted a curriculum for the course of studies, unique in itself, where equal facilities are provided for both religious and secular education on one platform, whereby the students could achieve proficiency in secular education equal in standards to that are maintained in State and private schools and colleges in the country.

The Rifai Thareeqa commenced the Rifayiya Boys Arabic College in Kapuwatte last year for boys, in the first year itself the demand for admission by prospective students has been high. Insha Allah with the available facilities, the management will look into the prospects of increasing the intake to the college next year.

Besides, it is my duty to mention at this juncture that, next to Almighty Allah,s help, guidance and inspiration, we would not have been able to achieve this great feat had it not been for the generous and philanthropic contributions and donations from our well wishers and muhibbeens, who volunteered to help this worthy cause “sadakathun jariya”. May Almighty Allah bless them with health, wealth and happiness in this world, and grant them virtues rewards in their life hereafter.

Before concluding my message, may I also remind every one of our sympathizers, that while we happily celebrate our achievement, we should not forget the fact that we have much greater task ahead of us, in completing construction of the Ladies College hostel complex. I am confident that all our well wishers will no doubt take every effort with absolute commitment and dedication to see that rest of the college complex sees the end of the tunnel in the very near future.

May Almighty Allah help us from all directions to achieve this virtuous feat. - Ameen.

Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmathullahi Wabarakathuh.

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