For Muslims around the world, the holiest month of the year starts Friday.
With physical distancing measures in effect due to COVID-19, however, and with mosques across Canada as well as in Winnipeg still closed, this year’s Ramadan prayers are moving to a virtual platform.
While participating in Ramadan, Muslims often time get together to pray at sunset and break their fast, also known as Iftaar.
This year, Iftaar celebrations will have look different as no in-person gatherings are allowed.
The Manitoba Islamic Association, meanwhile, is suggesting other ways people can stay connected.
“Instead of having your Iftaar party you could donate those funds to Winnipeg harvest,” Vali said.
“We are running food programs and hampers — there are many organizations that are helping the needy — or you could cook the food and deliver contactless delivery at loved ones’ doorsteps and have a virtual Iftaar.”
In past years, upwards of 300 people would gather at Winnipeg’s Grand Mosque each day of Ramadan to pray and break their fast together at sunset. The association is also trying to keep some traditions alive, while keeping physical distance.
“We’re going to actually offer a pickup service,” said chair of the Manitoba Islamic Association, Idris Elbakri. “So people will kind of just drive by, volunteers basically arranging for them to get a meal delivered to their car.”
For those members feeling disconnected and discouraged during these unprecedented times, Elbakri sharing some words of encouragement.
“One of the most important lessons of Ramadan is patience,” Elbakri said. “So we’ve got to be patient with ourselves, we’ve got to be patient with our authorities. This is happening for our own good, for our own benefit, so we just have to take it one day at a time and try to get though it.
“This too shall pass.”
Ramadan commences Friday, April 24 and runs for 30 days.View link »