The Holy Quran, which Muslims believe to be the direct Word of God, has promised Muslims who are good and righteous the reward of “Khilafat” whereby a “Khalifa” (Spiritual Successor), is appointed by Allah to continue the work of a Prophet. This is an elected office where the Holy Spirit superintends the election process. The Khalifa (Caliph) of Islam-Ahmadiyya is God’s man on earth.
The word Khilafat means succession, and the Khalifa is a successor to a Prophet of Allah whose goal is to carry to completion the tasks of reformation and moral training that were seeded by the Prophet. The community of followers of a Prophet of Allah continues to nurture its faith and practices under the blessing of the institution of Khilafat for as long as Allah wishes. Allah says in the Holy Quran:
“Allah had promised to those among you who believe and do good works that He will surely make them Successors in the earth, as He made Successors from among those who were before them; and that He will surely establish for them their religion which He has chosen for them; and that He will surely give them in exchange security and peace after their fear: They will worship Me, and they will not associate anything with Me. Then whoso is ungrateful after that, they will be the rebellious.” (24:56)
Today the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is the only Muslim community in the world that is united at the hand of one leader, who is known as the Khalifa. The Khalifa-tul Masih is the successor to the Promised Messiah, the Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, His Holiness Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian (peace be upon him). After his demise in 1908, the institution of Khilafat (Caliphate) was re-established in Islam on 27 May 1908; this day (27 May) is celebrated as ‘Khilafat-Day’ in the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. In 2008 the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community celebrated 100 years of the Khilafat.
The institution of Khilafat is the source of the Community’s unity, vibrancy, organisation, progress and its focus on peace. His Holiness Mirza Masroor Ahmad is the fifth Khalifa of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Although Khilafat is not in any way a hereditary institution, His Holiness Mirza Masroor Ahmad also has the distinct honour of being the great-grandson of the Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. http://ahmadiyya.mt/?mod=kalifi