May 21 marked the 1100th anniversary of the adoption of Islam by the Volga Bulgaria. Preparations for the great anniversary of this historic event, which took place in 922, began a few years earlier with various events and the implementation of many initiatives, and today its long-awaited culminating celebration took place.
The festive event was attended by Head Special Representative of the Russian Federation to the OIC Ramazan Abdulatipov, Department of Internal Policy of the Presidential Administration of Russia Anatoly Vylegzhanin, Deputy Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation, Executive Secretary of the Federal Organizing Committee Olga Yarilova, President of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov, State Counselor of Tatarstan Mintimer Shaimiev, Deputy Prime Minister Minister of the Republic of Tatarstan, Chairman of the “National Council” of the World Congress of Tatars Vasil Shaykhraziev. Among the muftis were: the head of the Muslims of Tatarstan Kamil hazrat Samigullin, the Supreme Mufti of Russia, the chairman of the Central Muslim Spiritual Board Talgat hazrat Tadzhuddin, the chairman of the Spiritual Administration of Muslims of the Karachay-Cherkess Republic, the chairman of the Coordinating Center for Muslims of the North Caucasus, Ismail Haji Berdiev, the chairman of the Spiritual Muslim Board of the Russian Federation Ravil hazrat Gainutdin, the head of the Spiritual Administration of Muslims of the Karachay-Cherkess Republic, assembly of Muslims of Russia, the chairman of the Spiritual Board of Muslims of the City of Moscow and the Central Region “Muftiate of Moscow” Albir Hazrat Krganov, Metropolitan Kirill of Kazan and Tatarstan and other prominent religious figures of Russia. In addition, delegations from 76 states joined the event. In total, the main festive event in Bolgar was attended by more than 20 thousand people.
The ceremony began with a theatrical performance on the square in front of the Memorable Sign – a staged prologue personified the path of Islam to the Volga Bulgaria and the path along which Ahmed Ibn Fadlan walked. After the performances of the Tatar State Song and Dance Ensemble and the Kazan Dance Ensemble, distinguished guests entered the stage and congratulations were heard from their lips in the official part of the celebration.
Rustam Minnikhanov stressed that the 1100th anniversary is a significant event both for the Republic of Tatarstan and for Muslims in Russia and around the world. The President of Tatarstan thanked the Supreme Mufti of Russia, Talgat Tadzhutdin, for being one of the first to develop the idea of annual Muslim congresses in the ancient land of Bolgar. Rustam Minnikhanov also thanked Mintimer Shaimiev and the Renaissance Foundation for their great work on the restoration of Islamic monuments.
“All these components allowed the Muslims of Tatarstan, Russia, our guests to see at what level 1100 years ago at the state level our ancestors converted to Islam. I want to thank each of you. It is a great joy for us that you are with us today,” Rustam Minnikhanov addressed the audience.
Then the guests were read greeting telegrams on the occasion of the 1100th anniversary of the adoption of Islam by the Volga Bulgaria on behalf of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Mintimer Shaimiev noted that in 2014 the Bulgarian historical and archaeological complex was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Experts around the world have recognized that Bolgar is a place of voluntary adoption of Islam in the northernmost territories. “This is our common success, a worthy result of our joint work. Thanks to everyone who took part in this. The revival of the ancient city of Bolgar showed the whole world that we are a nation that preserves its historical heritage,” the State Counselor emphasized.
Also, the chairman of the Central Spiritual Muslim Board of Russia, the Supreme Mufti of Russia Talgat Tadzhuddin, the head of the Spiritual Administration of Muslims of the Russian Federation Ravil Gainutdin, the chairman of the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia Albir Krganov, the chairman of the Coordination Center of Muslims of the North Caucasus Ismail haji Berdiev, the mufti of Tatarstan, the chairman of the Spiritual Muslim Board of the Republic of Tatarstan Kamil Samigullin and Metropolitan Kirill of Kazan and Tatarstan.
Kamil hazrat thanked all the leaders, the assembled muftis. “Glory to Allah, in 1989 the Supreme Mufti Talgat Hazrat Tajuddin celebrated the 1100th anniversary of the adoption of Islam. After this event, a new page began in the history of the development of our religion in Russia. Christianity is officially accepted by Russia in 988. And Islam was officially adopted in 922, which means that the first heavenly religion in Russia is Islam. Therefore, this date is very important for all of us. May Allah be pleased with those who came to this holiday! – said the mufti and called on all those gathered at the site of the historic Cathedral Mosque to read the noon prayer. The participants of the celebration performed namaz after the Grand Mufti Talgat Hazrat Tadzhutdin.
The celebration of the 1100th anniversary continued with koresh wrestling competitions for the World Cup, a concert program.