Muslims in Islington prepare to spend Ramadan in lockdown
With mosques across the globe closed, and the Government telling everyone to stay home to stop the spread of coronavirus, this year’s Ramadan will look very different.
Mohammed Kozbar, Chairman of Finsbury Park Mosque, gave us his advice on how to observe Ramadan.
“During this holy month our spirits as Muslims are really elevated because everyone looks forward to meeting each other and performing their religious duties and helping others.
“In these unprecedented times, it becomes necessary to reflect and think of those in need during the global pandemic, whether they are our neighbours or members of our local communities who are in need of help and support. We are pleased to work collaboratively with other faith groups and Islington Council in order to support the most vulnerable in our communities.
“I am aware of people who call their families and friends and check in to see how everyone is doing and whether they need any support. This is the spirit of brotherhood and the spirit of Ramadan during this difficult time.
“As mosques across the county are closed in line with Government guidance, we want everyone to take comfort knowing that each of their homes will become mosques for them and their families. The spirit of Ramadan lives in our hearts, actions and homes. Therefore, I encourage our Muslim residents to pray and fast at home and to practise social distancing. People should be mindful of the restrictions and support each other in this challenging time to follow these.
“This year, Ramadan will be different and we will miss many things, here at Finsbury Park Mosque, we will miss the daily Iftar where more than 300 people share the meal together, we will the night prayer where more than 1500 people pray together, we will miss our annual community Iftar where we invite our friends from faith and community leaders, politicians, journalists and neighbours to join us, we will miss our annual street Iftar where around 1500 people from different faiths and no faith gather to share Iftar together, we will miss our Eid gathering and greeting, but we are determined to come back stronger and we shall meet again and celebrate our diversity and unity.
“Many doctors and nurses have lost their lives saving others, including many Muslim doctors and nurses who were among the first who sacrificed their lives for others during this pandemic. We are so proud of our NHS heroes who are on the frontline.
“Finally, I would like to wish everyone a blessed and restful Ramadan full of peace and joy.”