Delivered at Ahlul Bait (a.s) Islamic Centre, Ottery, Cape Town

(Father Clohessy is a Catholic Priest who studied Islam and teaches Islam at the Vatican and has written extensively about Imam Husayn (a.s) and Lady Fatima (a.s))

One day there was a young girl preparing for her wedding. She went from tailor to tailor to make a dress that rustles. Unable to get a suitable tailor, she eventually finds one, insisting that she wants a wedding garment that rustles, despite it being heavy and uncomfortable.

She explains to the tailor that she is marrying a blind man, so with the rustling of her garment she is able to let him know that she is there every step of the way!

As we prepare to commemorate the tragedy of Karbala in these annual gatherings of mourning, let us draw strength from the rustling sound of the tears of Lady Fatima as she weeps for her son Husayn, even if we cannot see her.

I want us all to draw strength from her on the following 3 aspects:

1. Fatima as a model for every mother who weeps over her child. Hear her cries over her martyred son!

2. Fatima as a model for all those who find life a struggle – in those days of immense grief, life became very difficult for Fatima after the passing of her father, the political turmoil and her struggle for inheritance. So for all of those who find each day a struggle, find strength in the life of Fatima.

3. Fatima as a model for those who refuse to forget God, despite all difficulties and pain.

We pray in these days that she prays for us in that place where she makes her tears known to God for her son Husayn.

Lady Fatima’s love does not only include the community of Muslims, but also I believe, based on my research, that it includes people like myself.