December saw iERA’s Jesus Exhibition hit the road to go on display across the East Midlands.
In Leicester, iERA partnered with the City Retreat to showcase the exhibition. The night before the main event, iERA’s Nadeem Ashraf delivered dawah training to 60 volunteers to prepare them for the exhibition. The training grounded them in iERA’s GORAP dawah conversation framework, giving them the tools to initiate and bring any conversation to the foundation of Islam.
To invite the local community to experience the retreat, Nadeem Ashraf, alongside iERA’s co-founders, Yusuf Chambers and Saqib Sattar led a team of volunteers to Leicesters busy city centre to engage the passers-by. The volunteers handed out specially designed invitation cards which had a ‘coupon’ for free refreshments built into them. This worked out extremely well with a number of people being drawn to the exhibition.
A belated anniversary gift…
On his way back to the City Retreat, Nadeem bumped into Mark. He invited him to the event, but Mark very politely refused because he was in a massive rush to get gifts for his wife as it was actually his wedding anniversary! Nadeem jokingly suggested to him to get her a copy of our new book on Jesus! That got him curious, so he agreed to pop in quickly and grab a book. He ended up staying a while and before leaving exclaimed that he was extremely impressed by the beautiful exhibition.
Sharing spiritual legacies…
Nadeem also spoke to Richard, a devout Christian. He was clearly into his poetry and declared that he only reads the King James Version of the Bible because of its expressive style. He was also very spiritual and cited a few past experiences that he had with the ‘Holy Ghost’. But he had very good manners and listening skills which made the discussion a positive experience.
Nadeem conveyed to him how Islam too has a long and deep spiritual legacy. They also discussed the character and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) which then lead into a discussion about the Prophet peace be upon him being the last and final messenger. They parted with Nadeem encouraging him to read the Quran, which has its poetic traits too and to study the life of the Prophet peace be upon him, to which he agreed. May Allah swt guide them both.
After a successful event in Leicester, the exhibition moved down the road to the city of Nottingham to be set up at the ‘Nottingham Islam Information Centre’. This unique centre provides a range of services and activities to the local Muslims and Non-Muslims communities.
Nadeem Ashraf, alongside iERA’s CEO Hamza Tzortzis, set up the exhibition and with the support of the local team headed out to the city centre to invite the locals to attend.
Nadeem used this occasion to provide some tips on how to convey the call and the brothers appreciated the ‘new’ style. They traditionally were used to a very formal approach when it comes to stopping, rapport building and initiating a conversation, but now some of these new tips shall be adopted by the local team to enhance their local outreach activities. The centre saw a steam of attendees throughout the day including a university student who was brought by her Muslim friend. The experience had a profound impact on her, bringing her close to embracing Islam.
A new Muslim who is going through iERA’s educational retreat programme invited his family along to experience the retreat with the hope of them coming to understand a little more about their son’s new faith.
Finally, another attendee to the exhibition, Jessica, had been studying Islam for some time, was so moved by the experience that she made the choice to finally embrace Islam. May Allah keep her firm upon Islam and guide all those that explored the Jesus Exhibition.
Would you like to host iERA’s Jesus Exhibition in your area? Get in touch by using our simple service at iera.org/request.