Eid'l Adha

Muslim families reunite, celebrate ‘greatness of Allah’ on Eid’l Adha

James Patrick Cruz

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Muslim families reunite, celebrate ‘greatness of Allah’ on Eid’l Adha

PRAYERS. Hundreds of Filipino Muslims gather at Quezon Memorial Circle for Eid’l Adha prayers on June 28, 2023.

Angie de Silva/Rappler

'Whatever you love, make sure your love for Allah is greater,' says Ustaz Abdul Muin Yunus during Eid'l Adha prayers at Quezon Memorial Circle

MANILA, Philippines – With his wife and four of their children, Resty Sangki woke up at 5 am on Wednesday, June 28, to travel from Pasig to Quezon City to celebrate one of two great Muslim feasts: Eid’l Adha or the Feast of Sacrifice.

Sangki and his family were among hundreds of Filipino Muslims who attended the Eid’l Adha celebration at Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City on Wednesday, a public holiday in the Philippines. The congregation prayer and celebration was organized by Quezon City’s Bangsamoro affairs office.

Sangki said it has been their tradition to attend gatherings like this. For him, Eid’l Adha is more than just a holiday, as it also serves as a reunion and bonding for him, his family, and his friends.

Adult, Female, Person
Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City is one of the prayer sites of Muslims on Eid’l Adha, June 28, 2023. Angie de Silva/Rappler

“Every Eid is like a reunion,” Sangki told Rappler in Filipino. “We have a reunion with siblings, cousins, and other relatives. Because that happens only twice a year – Eid’l Adha and Eid’l Fitr.”

Eid’l Adha is one of the two great feasts in Islam, the other being Eid’l Fitr, which ends the fasting month of Ramadan. During the feast of Eid’l Adha, Muslims pray as a community at daybreak, and later sacrifice acceptable animals like sheep or cows. 

In the park, most of the Muslim men were wearing long pants, while women were wearing full-length skirts or dresses and hijabs. 

Before the prayer started, Muslims were chanting the Arabic phrase “Allahu Akbar,” which means “God is the greatest.” 

Crowd, Person, Audience
Filipino Muslims are exhorted to remember the greatness of Allah on Eid’l Adha, June 28, 2023. Angie de Silva/Rappler

The prayer started around 6:30 am. Facing the direction of the Kaaba in Mecca, Muslims rolled out their mats, prayed, and listened to the preacher.

Muslims recalled the story of Ibrahim and how Allah tested his faith. Allah asked Ibrahim to sacrifice his firstborn Ishmael.

Having tested Ibrahim’s faith, Allah eventually stopped Ibrahim from sacrificing his son. A ram was instead offered to Allah.

Ang araw na ito pinapaintindi sa atin ang kadakilaan ni Allah. Kung ano man ang minamahal mo, mas pahigitan mo ang pagmamahal mo sa Allah. Kung ano man ang pinagmamataas, pinagyayabang mo, ipagmayabang mong higit ang Allah. Kung meroon ka mang pinagkakatiwalaan, ibalik mo ang pagkatiwala mo sa Allah,” Muslim preacher Ustaz Abdul Muin Yunus said.

(This day reminds us of the greatness of Allah. Whatever you love, make sure your love for Allah is greater. Whatever you boast about or take pride in, take pride in Allah more. If you have anyone you trust, return your trust to Allah.)

Yunus also asked the Muslims to extend their blessings to other people during the three-day celebration of Eid’l Adha.

As of 2020, there are around 6.9 million Muslims in the Philippines, comprising 6.4% of the religious affiliations in the country, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

They are a religious minority compared to the dominant Catholics, who comprise 78.8% of the reported religious affiliations in the country at 85.6 million Filipinos.

A recent Social Weather Stations survey found that a record-high 65% of Filipino adults agreed that “Muslims are just as trustworthy as any other Filipino.” – with reports from Michelle Abad/Rappler.com

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