Islam is an Arabic word which literally means “submission”. In the context of faith. it means submission to the will of the Allah (Arabic for God), single creator of the universe and all living creatures including humans.
The belief is centered on the concept of One God Who, beginning with Adam, sent a series of messengers (prophets), from time to time, for the guidance of mankind. Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad are the major prophetic names believed to have received the revealed word of God compiled in book forms. Torah, Bible and Quran are the compiled messages of God’s guidance revealed respectively to Moses, Jesus and Mohammad.
The followers of these revealed books identify themselves as Jews, Christians and Muslims respectively. These three major religions are commonly referred to as Abrahamic religions -emphasizing the tracing of their common origin to the tribal patriarch Abraham.
The terms Muslim and Islam are now exclusively used for the followers of the Quran even though according to the Quran, Abraham
declared himself to be the first Muslim and all revealed religions are the messages of Islam.
In reference to the Arabic Quran, the core religious beliefs of Islam are:
- Oneness of God and unity in diversity
- Sanctity of life and respect for human Rights
- Justice and Gender Equality
- Freedom of Religion
- Life after death and accountability under the Judgment of God alone
Muslim places of worship and community gatherings are called mosques. In BC these are operated by Islamic Associations.
British Columbia Muslim Association (BCMA) is the largest single organization that currently administers mosques located in Richmond, Victoria, Burnaby, Vancouver, Surrey, Abbottsford, Chilliwack, Kamloops, Kelowna, and Prince George.
In addition, it also operates Islamic Schools (Kindergarten to Grade 7) which are located in Richmond and Surrey.
BCMA also provides community and charitable services including:
- Funeral and Burial Services
- Food Bank
- Outreach to promote interfaith dialogue
For details please visit BCMA’s web page www.thebcma.com