Dear brothers and sisters, Eid al Fitr is at our doors, and with that is the conclusion to the blessed month of Ramadan.
We made it through the longest Ramadan that we can experience as from this year forward they will not be quite as long as they were this year. And yet there is a feeling of sadness as we bid farewell to the blessed month for another year. May Allah SWT enable us to reap the reward of this and many more to come insh’Allah.
This month of Ramadan has been the source of many tests on us, particularly in Manchester and then in London. Often we are doing our duas, we focus on the people in countries overseas who are suffering. And rightly so, they are in need of our duas and we pray Allah SWT makes it easy for them.
However, there is a phrase in this country that says “Charity begins at home” and this is something the imam mentioned and is worth remembering. We all belong to this community of Manchester and then the community of UK. Whatever we may think of the politics of this place is a discussion outside of this reminder and this masjid. What matters though is that we do not neglect our own communities in our duas. That we pray for the city of Manchester, we pray for the country of England. Why? Because this is the country to which Allah SWT has put us and this is the country we call home. This is where we are living our lives and this is where are children are growing up. Why wouldn’t we have this place at the top of our list of duas? By praying for Manchester, we are praying for ourselves and our families that live here.
Alongside the tests, we have also had great news in this month. We had a city-wide initiative called Taste Ramadan which had non-muslims experience an iftar inside a masjid with local muslims. This was a great success and helped to heal our city from the pain it had felt earlier in the month. In regards to this masjid, we also had great news in that our outstanding debt of £27k was reduced to just £4k in a single night through the donations of the people that attend this masjid. Insh’Allah we are only a small step away from a massive achievement for this masjid.
And so with the month of Ramadan almost over, it is over to Eid-al-Fitr as the focus. As with the month of Ramadan, the day of Eid-al-Fitr has many recommendations and obligations upon us to perform. The first one of these was the Zakat-al-Fitr which was reminded of throughout the month and is expected to be paid before Eid-al-Fitr.
Alongside that though there are others which are the subject of today’s reminder. This reminder concludes with a to-do list of 7 items which are to be done around Eid-al-Fitr.
- The first one is of doing takbir. This translates to glorifying your Lord. We may have heard this upon entering the masjid on the day of Eid to perform the Eid prayer. Actually this sunnah is done from the moment of sunset on the final day of Eid until the beginning of the Eid prayer. The imam reminded us of Sura Al-Baqarah, ayat 185 in which Allah SWT said:
And to Glorify Allah for that to which He has guided you; perhaps you will be grateful.
For those who don’t know the takbir. It is:
Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar
La illaha il Allah
Alahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar,
Translated this is:
Allah is Great, Allah is Great, Allah is Great
There is no God but Allah
Allah is Great, Allah is Great
And all praise be to Allah
- To do purification, i.e. have a bath. Wear the best of clothes and put your best cologne on dear brothers.
- To eat some dates prior to leaving the house for the Eid prayer.
- To take children and women with you. Even if the women are not praying on that day.
- To listen to the khutba in full and to pray the Eid prayer. Some people leave after the Eid prayer and don’t wait for the khutba. Dear brothers and sisters, what is another 10 minutes or so just so that a sunnah is completed on this blessed of days?
- To give congratulations to one another. Dear brothers in particular, this is Eid-al-Fitr so congratulate each other after the khutba is completed, that means handshakes and hugs all round.
- And lastly, it is Sunnah to return to your homes via a different route to that which you take coming to the masjid so that more people witness the celebration of Eid.
Dear brothers and sisters, we struggled and strived our way in the month of Ramadan for the sake of Allah SWT and to reap the rewards of the blessed month. Let’s end it in the right manner by reaping the rewards of the blessed festival of Eid-al-Fitr.