HM the King, Commander of the Faithful, Delivers Message to Moroccan Pilgrims to Holy Places of Islam – Full Text –

His Majesty King Mohammed VI, Commander of the Faithful, may God assist Him, has sent a message to Moroccan pilgrims bound for the Holy Places of Islam in the year 1444 A.H. The full text of the Royal Message was read out by the Minister of Habous and Islamic Affairs, Ahmed Toufiq, on the occasion of the departure of the first contingent of pilgrims from Rabat-Salé airport on Friday:   “Honorable pilgrims, May Almighty God bless you and protect you. With the advent of each Hajj season, it has been a tradition for me, as Commander of the Faithful and Custodian of religious rites and sanctities in this safe country, to address the first group of pilgrims, and through them, all our men and women departing for the Holy Land. This tradition attests to my special interest in the performance of this pillar of Islam, about which the Almighty says: “And proclaim the Pilgrimage among men: they will come to you on foot and (mounted) on every kind of camel, lean on account of journeys through deep and distant mountain highways; that they may witness the benefits (provided) for them, and celebrate the name of Allah, through the Days appointed”. This message is intended to provide you with directives concerning the performance of this sacred religious obligation which unites Muslims from all parts of the world. Wearing the seamless clothing of Ihram, they perform Dua’ and supplications, in full submission to God, Lord of the Worlds. Stripped of all worldly objects, or signs of social status, they praise the Almighty with one voice, reciting the talbiyah: “At Your service, Allah, at Your service. At Your service, You have no partner; at Your service. Truly all praise, favour and sovereignty is Yours. You have no partner”. Here you are today, fully prepared to leave your beloved homeland and depart for the Sacred House of God – the first abode created on the face of the earth to worship Allah. You will be leaving your families and homes, seeking God’s forgiveness and satisfaction. May you have a safe journey to the Holy Land and back. Honorable pilgrims, I would like to remind you, in this regard, of the need for you to comply with the requirements of piety, since there is no better provision for this journey than devoutness. You must also observe good manners during this great Hajj season. As they go on pilgrimage, Muslims should strive to perform two momentous, complementary missions: the first is to glorify the One and only God, and the second is to embody the unity of Muslims and their adherence to the path determined by the Almighty. Hajj was made a pillar of Islam to epitomize equality between the faithful as they visit the Sacred House, Mina and Mount Arafat, wearing their Ihram garment, with nothing distinguishing one pilgrim from another – not in rank, status or any other consideration. Keep in mind, while in the Holy Land, that you are ambassadors of your religion during the great Hajj season. These are rituals which epitomize Islamic fraternity, moderation in matters relating to faith as well as conduct, and rejection of all manifestations of radicalism, extremism or any cause of discord or strife. I should like to remind you, in this regard, of what the rituals of pilgrimage require in terms of order, discipline and strict compliance with the obligations and customary religious practices of Hajj.  Needless to say, you have been provided with proper counselling for the performance of Hajj, thanks to the work done by our scholars under the supervision of the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs, and also to the keenness of my Minister for Awqaf to do what is needed in this regard. I wish to remind you of the need, during Hajj, to spend your time – wherever you may be – performing dhikr, supplications, and sincere acts of obedience and worship, seeking God’s forgiveness, rising above any trivial matters, and steering away from any proscribed conduct, in compliance with the words of the Almighty: “For Haj are the months well known. If anyone undertakes that duty therein, let there be no obscenity, nor wickedness, nor wrangling in the Haj. And whatever good you do, (be sure) God knows it. And take a provision (with you) for the journey, but the best of provisions is right conduct. So fear Me, O you that are wise!”. Therefore, do make sure – honorable pilgrims – to perform your rituals in compliance with the teachings of your religion. Remember to praise and glorify Almighty God, with sincere reverence for Him, so that you may achieve the ultimate goal of pilgrimage, which is to obtain forgiveness and the utmost reward promised by the Almighty, as indicated by Prophet Muhammad – may peace and blessings be upon Him – who said: “There is no reward for an accepted Haj except Paradise”. Honorable pilgrims, I am sure you are aware of what the performance of Hajj in the Holy Land requires in terms of compliance with the measures taken by the authorities concerned in our sister nation, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, so as to receive the guests of the Almighty in the best conditions. The aim is to make sure the Hajj season proceeds as expected, in a climate of discipline, security and safety, and in accordance with the instructions given by my venerable brother, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz, Sovereign of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – may God grant him good health and a long life. May the Almighty grant him the support of my revered brother, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers – may God grant him success and a long life. I should like, in this regard, to say how much I value the fraternal ties between the two kingdoms and peoples. Honorable Pilgrims, Bear in mind, while performing Hajj and Umrah rituals, that you will be there with fellow brothers and sisters from all parts of the Islamic world. Therefore, be worthy ambassadors of your homeland; be a reflection of your country’s time-honored civilization and identity, which is based on openness, tolerance and the shunning of controversy, argument and conflict; act like representatives of the Muslim Ummah, the best nation evolved for mankind, as the Almighty says: “Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong; they are the ones to attain felicity”. Congratulations to you all, for Almighty God has facilitated for you the performance of this most sacred obligation, making it possible for you to visit the blessed Rawdah in al-Madina al-Munawwarah, the tomb of the last of all Prophets and Messengers, and the worthiest of all of God’s creations. Therefore, do bear in mind His most distinct status, and send prayers and blessings His way. And while in those holy places, remember your obligation to pray for your King, who attends to your safety and to the security of our homeland. Pray that Almighty God grant him His assistance and ensure the success of the development initiatives he is spearheading, as well as his untiring endeavors to preserve Morocco’s sovereignty and unity. Pray that our beloved country remain a pioneer in achieving a dignified life for our citizens, and a staunch ally for Moslem and African sister nations for the achievement of their progress and the consolidation of their unity. Implore the Almighty that I see only such things as please the eye and delight the heart from His Royal Highness Crown Prince Moulay El Hassan, and all members of the Royal Family. Pray that God may grant forgiveness to, and be satisfied with, my venerated grandfather and with my revered father, Their Majesties King Mohammed V and King Hassan II – May God bless their souls, and reward them for all they did to liberate the nation, build the Moroccan State and preserve its unity. Honorable Pilgrims, I reiterate my wishes to you for safe journeys to the Holy Land and back home. May you reap the ample rewards of Hajj, and may your supplications be answered. Almighty God has power over all things, and He is oft-responding.   Wassalamu alaikum warahmatullah wabarakatuh.”