Eid Greetings from Rochdale Council of Mosques

Date published: 24 May 2020

A message from Tahir Mahmood Chairperson, Rochdale Council of Mosques (RCM).

After a month’s long fasting, Muslims in Rochdale and around the world will mark the end of Ramadan this weekend with the festival of Eid ul Fitr. For the first time in our lives we have had to do Ramadan at home due to the ongoing restrictions and the need for social distancing brought about by Covid-19.

With Mosques closed and no gatherings, Ramadan has been completely different, as normally it is a time of coming together and the atmosphere has been somewhat muted. People have found new ways of keeping up with their religious obligations. Children have been creative by making temporary mosques in their homes, and Mosques have had to make use of technology to broadcast messages, training and sermons.

These are truly testing times and this Ramadan has been a new experience for us all, as is the Eid and oncoming days. This pandemic has left a dark mark on all communities and the Muslim community has also been adversely affected. We have all shown patience and perseverance during the lockdown and isolation, this period has been unnatural and the essence of Eid will no doubt be different. The Muslim community and its organisations have continued with their tremendous work and this should not be overlooked, may Allah reward all for their efforts.

We pray that you and your loved ones are safe, well and healthy and you are maximising on the rewards available in Ramadan.  Let us make every endeavour to seek Allah almighty’s pleasure and His forgiveness. And ensure that we include in our prayers all Muslims and non-Muslims alike who are working so tirelessly day in day out to save lives and protect humanity. 

We pray that this Ramadan, Allah showers His blessings upon all of His creation and He rids the world of Coronavirus and all such calamities for evermore and opens the doors of His houses so that we can once again collectively glorify His Oneness in the Mosques and places of worship again.

Over the past few weeks, we have been meeting with other Mosques Councils from across Greater Manchester, and locally with Rochdale Council, Police and other partners, we have also been reviewing Government Advice around the Lockdown.

Following meetings with local partners including Public Health and Police and based on all the advice, we have concluded, that sadly Eid Prayers will not be taking place in congregation either in a Mosque or an outside setting. We urge you to follow the guidelines of isolation and social distancing as this is key for the safety of all.

We know that this is going to be met with great sadness and disappointment, but in the interest of the health and well-being of our loved ones and the wider community this is the right decision.

Rochdale has had no major issues and that’s a credit to the people of this borough.

I would like to thank Greater Manchester Police and Rochdale Borough Council for working with mosques and offer the reassurance during the month and beyond as mosques remain closed.

I would like to also commend all our member mosques and volunteers for their tireless community efforts, whether that was through organising food parcels and donations to vulnerable people and the NHS, collecting for foodbanks, feeding the homeless/refugees/asylum seekers, and even fundraising – where each year thousands are raised to help those most in need. This has been a whole new experience having to keep social distancing measures and with mosques being shut. 

May you all enjoy and celebrate the day with your family (please note: we will not be able to visit friends, relatives and neighbours this time), we can all greet friends and relatives using the social media and technology at our disposal. We pray that it be filled with peace and blessings. Please stay safe and avoid unnecessary contact and follow the NHS, Police and Government guidance. We must not let up in this fight as the consequences will be unthinkable.

Have a safe Eid. 

Eid Mubarak.

From all of us at Rochdale Council of Mosques (RCM)

Tahir Mahmood Chairperson, Rochdale Council of Mosques

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