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Royal hello for Muslim leader - 2008-11-25

Tuesday, 2008, November 25
The Calgary Sun

Thousands of the city's Ismaili Muslim community turned out at the Roundup Centre yesterday to hear words of wisdom and inspiration from their spiritual leader, His Royal Highness the Aga Khan.
A direct descendant of the Prophet Muhammad, the Aga Khan came to Canada on invitation from the federal government and stopped in Ottawa and Toronto before coming to Calgary, his first visit to the city in 16 years.

The Aga Khan left for Vancouver last night where he will wrap up an eight-day tour of the country today.The purpose of the trip, said volunteer Sameera Sereda, is to celebrate the Aga Khan's golden jubilee.

'The Aga Khan commemorated his 50th anniversary last July, so since then he's been visiting countries around the world and visiting his communities around the world,' said Sereda.

Aga Khan met with Lt.-Gov. Norman Kwong, as well as University of Alberta president Dr. Indira Samarasekera and vice-president Dr. Carl Amrhein before speaking in front of about 14,000 followers at the Roundup Centre yesterday afternoon and holding a public prayer service last night.

'He provided guidance to the community on both worldy and spiritual matters,' said Sereda.

'Living with the ethics of Islam and the importance of education.

'The values of generosity and alleviating poverty, those are messages he speaks on on a regular basis.'

The Aga Khan also heads the Aga Khan Development Network, which improves living conditions of people around the world and has an annual budget of $500 million.

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