08 August 2023

Islamic community prayed for Sinead O’Connor at ‘moving and spiritual’ funeral

08 August 2023

Sinead O’Connor had a “moving and private” funeral featuring Islamic prayers ahead of a funeral procession along a waterfront in Ireland.

The Chief Imam at the Islamic Centre of Ireland, who delivered Sinead O’Connor’s funeral prayer, said O’Connor “never moved away from God” unlike others who have “difficulties and trials” in their lives.

Shaykh Dr Umar Al-Qadri told the PA news agency: “The funeral was obviously private (for) the family and it was a very moving ceremony and I think it really reflected the beautiful personality of Sinead.

“It was very spiritual and it reflected her Irish identity as well as her Muslim identity.

“So I was with the members of the Muslim community and we performed the Janazah prayer, which is the Islamic funeral prayer, over Sinead.”

Her funeral was attended by several political figures including President Michael D Higgins and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and musicians such as U2 frontman Bono and Bob Geldof.

Following the service, the hearse bearing O’Connor’s coffin passed by her former home in Bray, Co Wicklow as hundreds of fans lined the streets.

Dr Umar Al-Qadri helped convert O’Connor – who changed her name to Shuhada’ Davitt, later Shuhada Sadaqat – to Islam.

He also told PA: “She was an amazing human being who was not just a great musician, artist, but one that would reach hearts of millions of people because of her voice but also because of the amazing content.

“Whatever she said, had a deep meaning. She had always had strong faith and conviction in God and that is what motivated her to study theology.

“She studied different faiths, religions and essentially, when she studied Islam it was for her like ‘This was the religion I was always looking for. This was exactly the faith I was always looking for. I was always a Muslim, but I never realised’.”

Dr Al-Qadri was also present as the Irish Muslim Council laid flowers by O’Connor’s grave.

He wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter: “May her family and loved ones find solace in the outpouring of love from the corners of this earth for this unique daughter of Ireland who moved so many hearts with her mighty voice and unflinching honesty as an artist, poet, and human being.”

The Islamic scholar also revealed O’Connor’s eulogy online saying he gave his “heartfelt gratitude” to her family and added that he was “humbled by the privilege” of delivering her service.

He wrote: “Just as Sinead O’Connor brought diverse souls together through her art, so have you orchestrated a symphony of unity during her final journey.

“Your noble gesture has transcended boundaries and connected strangers, echoing the very essence of Sinead’s legacy.

“In this shared moment of remembrance and prayer, we find ourselves united in a tapestry of love, compassion and reverence.

“May this ceremony be a testament to the enduring power of humanity’s collective spirit, as we bid farewell to a remarkable soul who touched us all.”

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