Friday the 15th March, 2019 will go into history as the darkest day in New Zealand, according to country Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern and indeed to Muslims all over the world.
49 innocent Muslims so far are confirmed dead, sprayed with bullets from an automatic gun by an Australian citizen, Brenton Harrison Tarrant while they were in two mosques in Christ Church town, Masjid Noor and Masjid LinWood.
Definitely, the number of the dead may rise because another 40 Muslims were injured among them 20 who are in critical condition. A 14-year-old boy who was among the injured in the attack has since died, his father has confirmed.
This terror attack bears all the marks of extreme Islamaphobia (hate of Islam and Muslims) currently on the rise around the world.
The ring leader of the gang that carried out this hate filled terror attack had earlier posted in his Twitter account words of deep hatred against Muslims and he recorded live the incident which shows he was indeed enjoying killing innocent Muslims.
While reflecting on this crime, Muslims should remind ourselves of the words of Allah who says in the Qur’an:
وَمَا تَدْرِي نَفْسٌ مَّاذَا تَكْسِبُ غَدًا وَمَا تَدْرِي نَفْسٌ بِأَيِّ أَرْضٍ تَمُوتُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ خَبِيرٌ
Meaning “…and no any soul knows what will earn tomorrow and no any soul knows in what land it will die. Indeed, Allah (is) All-Knower All-Aware” (Qur’an 31:34).
They were in the Mosques to fulfill their obligation to Allah, yet death followed them there. Knowing this, we must earnestly prepare ourselves for death, for no one knows when, where and how s/he will die.
Although this terror attack is so painful and sorrowful, yet Islam comforts the believers saying “And think not of those, who are slain in the way of Allah, as dead. Nay, they are living. With their Lord they have provision” (Qur’an 3:169).
The terrorists wanted to kill these believers and in doing so they think they got the better of them. In fact, the terrorists are the losers while those killed are in heaven since they are martyrs.
For us Muslims, while those who hate us are rejoicing, there is nothing for us to do but pray to Allah for the martyrs and cling steadfast to forbearance (Subra) as Allah says;
May Allah accept their deeds and give strength to their families, friends and relatives-Ameen