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Zohreh Sefati

Zohreh Sefati

Madam Zohreh Sefati is a female Ayatollah (Mujtahideh). She was born in Abadan, Iran and today is considered to be one of the most powerful personalities in the country. Sefati is a member of the Socio-Cultural Council and a representative to the Supreme Council of Cultural Reforms. Madam Sefati was born in Abadan, Iran, and raised in a religious family. She was the daughter of a pious, kindly man, and her mother was known for her noble personality and for having the entire Qur'an memorized. She studied her high school level subjects at home before attending theology school in 1966. Sefati took preliminary lessons of jurisprudence, literature, and Islamic Sciences in Abadan. In 1970, she left to attend Qom Theology School to continue her studies. She was a student of renowned scholars such as Ayatollah Shahidi, Ayatollah Haqqi, Ayatollah Ali Meshkini and Ayatollah Mohammad Hassan Ahmadi-Faqih (who is her husband). Madam Sefati achieved the highest jurisprudence degree (Ijtihad), an accomplishment made only by a small number of women. Her Ijtihad degree was approved unanimously by several Maraja' Taqleed, including Ayatollahs Ali Yari Gharavi-Tabrizi (a student of Ayatollah Naeini), Safi Gulpaygani, Fazel Lankarani, and Mohammad Hassan Ahmadi-Faqih.

Madam Sefati has also founded schools for women, establishing the Women's Theology School in Qom in 1970. She has been a force to be reckoned with in her academic and scholarly career, and continues to be this day. She was one of the 3,000 exemplary women commended by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and received a plaque of honor from the Chief Executive in October 2006. Madam Zohreh Sefati's life, accomplishments, and struggles have been a source of inspiration and knowledge for all aspiring Shia scholars, both male and female.

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