Muslim prayers in Hagia Sophia for first time in 86 years
Muslims attending the first Friday prayers inside Hagia Sophia Grand Mosque in 86 years expressed excitement over its reversion from a museum. Crowds gathered in Istanbul as the historic Hagia Sophia site opened for Friday prayers for the first time since Turkish authorities ruled it could be converted into a mosque. On this occasion, millions of children arrived in Hagia Sophia to offer Friday prayers. It was as if the whole of Istanbul had come to pray. The prayer was preceded by a sermon and recited by the Turkish President.
After a long time, when the call to prayer was heard from the minarets of the mosque, many eyes were filled with tears and soul-stirring scenes came to be seen. People camped outside the mosque overnight, but due to the lack of space for one and a half thousand worshipers and the lack of space in the mosque, millions of citizens prayed outside on the streets.
Turkish President Tayyab Erdogan, ministers, dignitaries and members of parliament also attended the Friday prayers. Pope Francis, the spiritual leader of many countries, including the United States and the European Union, has criticized Turkey for rebuilding Sophia.
Turkish Minister of Religious Affairs Prof. Dr. Ali Erbash held a Friday sermon in Aya Sofia holding a sword in his hand. 86 years after the call to prayer was heard in the platforms and mihrabs of the historic Hagia Sophia Mosque in Istanbul, Turkey, thousands of children of Tawheed were drawn from all over the country.
Prof. Dr. Ali Erbash held a sword in his left hand, which on the one hand conveyed a message of awe to the hearts of the enemies and on the other hand gave a message of strength and confidence to the allies.