“…The driving force behind each of the Aga Khan’s endeavors is his desire to foster progress and peace through hope. For hope, he says, is the most powerful source of human motivation.”

Welcoming the Aga Khan to Texas

By HON. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON OF TEXAS

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Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson.

IN THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Monday, March 19, 2018

Ms. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize a man who has dedicated his life in service to humanity. It is my pleasure to welcome His Highness the Aga Khan IV, the 49th  hereditary Imam of the world’s 20 million Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, to my home state of Texas in celebration of his Diamond Jubilee.

The ethics of compassion and care, tolerance and equality, selflessness and service center His Highness’ deeply held belief in and practice of the Muslim faith. Particularly in recent years, the Aga Khan has pledged his voice to articulate the values of peace, generosity and brotherhood that unquestionably compose the core of Islam. He often says his obligations to his community and to humankind are inseparable. This has driven the Aga Khan to call on us to celebrate our differences of religion, culture, language and ethnicity as evidence of humanity’s great beauty. Our inherent diversity, he says, should propel humankind to embrace pluralism.

Ismaili Muslims have a deep connection to Texas, the DFW Metroplex and myself. For more than a decade, I have partnered with the Ismaili Muslim community to host the Youth Summit and Diversity Dialogue, which we held first in 2007 during the Aga Khan’s Golden Jubilee. It brings together students from my district with youth of all backgrounds to think critically about the challenges we can address through global citizenship. The program brings to light the positive impact young Ismaili Muslims make on the world around them.

Alongside his role as Imam, the Aga Khan has established many global humanitarian organizations, one of which is the Aga Khan Development Network. The AKDN promotes human dignity and self-sustaining growth by administering education and healthcare in many of the most impoverished and isolated parts of the developing world. Three of the most distinguished AKDN projects are the Aga Khan Academies, which offer world-class educations to children in remote, school-deprived regions. When I visited the Aga Khan Academy in Nairobi, Kenya in 2015, I was emotionally struck by the undeniable love of humankind evident in the AKDN’s work to help those children reach their full potential. It became clear to me that the driving force behind each of the Aga Khan’s endeavors is his desire to foster progress and peace through hope. For hope, he says, is the most powerful source of human motivation.

It is this spirit, born of the example of the Aga Khan, which led 2,500 Ismaili Muslim volunteers to help their neighbors in Houston recover from the devastation triggered by Hurricane Harvey last August. For this selfless generosity, they were presented one of the five Points of Light awards by the five living former presidents. The Ismaili Muslim community’s response to the unsounded call of duty exemplifies their unrelenting effort to serve humanity at large.

Mr. Speaker, His Highness the Aga Khan–through his work, rooted in the Muslim faith–is a testament to Islam being a religion of both the intellect and humility, of both tradition and progress. The celebration of the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee is a monumental occasion for Ismaili Muslims across the world. I wish to congratulate the American Ismaili Muslim community and convey to His Highness the Aga Khan that he and the values of tolerance, diversity and pluralism that Ismaili Muslims uphold will always be welcome in the United States of America.

Ms. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON’S remarks appear in Congressional Record Volume 164, Number 47, Monday, March 19, 2018, Extensions of Remarks, Page E337. For PDF version please click CREC-2018-03-19-pt1-PgE337-4

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EARLIER REMARKS (JULY 2012)

Congratulating the Aga Khan on his 60th year as Imam of the Ismaili Muslims

By HON. PETE OLSON OF TEXAS

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Congressman Pete Olson

IN THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Mr. OLSON. Mr. Speaker, I’m proud to represent one of the most diverse districts in America. Our diversity is an important part of  what makes the greater Houston area such a unique example of the fabric of the American experience.

The Ismaili Muslim community is a great contributor to Texas’ cultural richness and economic growth. I appreciate the Ismaili Muslim community’s engagement with the community as a whole, from public affairs to business to education.

Sixty years ago today, the Aga Khan became the 49th hereditary Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims. The role of the Imam is to interpret the faith to the community, as well as improve the quality and security of their daily lives. Aga Khan has accomplished this role with success and pride for many years.

The Aga Khan emphasizes the view of the religion of Islam as a thinking, spiritual faith: one that teaches compassion and tolerance, promotes the role of intellect and upholds the dignity of a man, God’s noblest creation.

I congratulate the Aga Khan on his Diamond Jubilee as Imam and wish both he and the U.S. Ismaili Muslim community continued success in their efforts to improve the lives of people around the world.

Mr. OLSON’S remarks appear in Congressional Record Volume 163, Number 117, Wednesday, July 12, 2017, Extensions of Remarks, Page E970

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Commemorating the beginning of the Diamond Jubilee for the Ismaili Muslim Community

By HON. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON OF TEXAS

IN THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Ms. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to commemorate the beginning of the Diamond Jubilee for the North Texas lsmaili Muslim community, and the broader Ismaili Muslim community across the world.

On July 11, 1957, The Aga Khan became the 49th hereditary Imam of the Shia Imami Nizari Ismaili Muslims. In these past six decades, the Aga Khan has guided the world’s 15 million Ismaili Muslims in both their spiritual and material lives, providing religious interpretation, ensuring their safety, and improving the quality of life for the community.

While serving as the leader of the Ismaili Muslims, the Aga Khan has also played a major role in the philanthropic arena. The Aga Khan Foundation, established by the Aga Khan in 1967, works on projects such as disaster relief and historical restoration of cities and artifacts through the various programs in the Aga Khan Development Network. The  AKDN along with its partners across the globe provides quality education and healthcare, along with promoting social and economic development to some of the world’s most impoverished and isolated communities.

The Ismaili Muslim community has contributed greatly to the cultural diversification and economic development in North Texas. Their volunteers have served the North Texas community by participating in local cleanups efforts after severe weather. The volunteers have also  worked alongside other faith based groups and local nonprofits to
provide meals to those who are less fortunate.

Mr. Speaker, the Diamond Jubilee presents an opportunity to the Ismaili Muslim community to reaffirm their faith and serve the communities in which they live through various programs established by the Aga Khan. I congratulate the Aga Khan and the Ismaili Muslim community on this momentous milestone.

Ms. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON’S remarks appear in Congressional Record Volume 163, Number 117, Wednesday, July 12, 2017, Extensions of Remarks, Page E968

Date posted: April 18, 2018.
Last updated: April 19, 2018 (More remarks added).

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EBJ-official-photo v smallCongresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson (born December 3, 1935) is a Democrat who currently represents the 30th Congressional District of Texas in the United States House of Representatives.  She was the first registered nurse elected to Congress in 1992 and is currently serving her 13th term in the United States House of Representatives. Congresswoman Johnson was elected as the first African-American and the first female Ranking Member of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. She also serves on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

She formerly served in the Texas state house, where she was elected in 1972 in a landslide, the first black woman to win electoral office from Dallas, Texas. She also served for three terms in the Texas senate before being elected to Congress.

Johnson had a career in nursing before entering politics. She served for 16 years as the first African-American Chief Psychiatric Nurse at the Dallas Veterans Administration Hospital.

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This website, Barakah, is a special project by http://www.Simerg.com and is dedicated to the textual and visual celebration of His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee or 60 years of Imamat.
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