The Muslim community in Lloydminster celebrated the end of Ramadan with Eid-ul-Fitr, where they break the fast they have been doing for the past month and celebrate with prayer, family, friends and food. JESSICA DEMPSEY LLS PHOTO
Muslims around Lloydminster celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr last week, as it marked the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
Residents celebrated the day with prayers, festive outfits, exchanging gifts and enjoyed meals.
Eid-ul-Fitr, which means festival of breaking the fast, is one of two religious festivals in Islam.
“It marks the end of Ramadan,” said Mansoor Azeem, Imam/missionary, Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at Lloydminster.
“Ramadan is the holiest month in the Islamic calendar. During Ramadan, one fasts from sunrise to sunset.”
The aim of Ramadan is to have the participant realize what those who are hungry are feeling.
“Islam teaches us that we cannot realize the hunger, we cannot realize the devastation unless we feel it ourselves. That is why we keep ourselves hungry, thirsty until sunrise and sunset so we can feel it,” said Azeem.
Ramadan lasts a month, and during this exercise, Azeem said it changes people.
“It increases them in spirituality, and when you increase in spirituality, you celebrate, you have achieved something. The achievement is Eid-ul-Fitr,” he said.
While this event was taking place in Lloydminster, it’s also worldwide. In North America, they celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr on June 15, because that is when they saw the moon. The next day is when the rest of the world celebrates.
At the end of the prayer, people were welcomed by embracing and greet each other.
“This is what Eid is about, to greet each other, to share a bond with each other, to unite the community, to unite the people all together so we could have more strength together,” said Azeem.
Charity is also a big aspect when it comes to Eid. Before coming to the mosque and before praying they have to do something charitable.
“Every single earning member has to do some charity before coming to the prayer,” said Azeem, noting every Muslim in the community comes to the prayer, so all of them have done some sort of charity work.
Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at Lloydminster member, Shahroze Afradi, said this celebration means a lot to him.
“Our goal is to get more close to God and get more spiritual, and fasting helps a lot. It’s the key,” he said.
His family planned on getting together to celebrate and enjoy the day with eating and talking.