According to the calculations made by the Moroccan Ministry of Religious Affairs, Morocco will celebrate the holiday of Eid El Fitr , which marks the end of Ramadan, on Monday 20 August 2012. Most Muslims countries such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Egypt, announced earlier on Friday that they will celebrate Eid El Fitr on Sunday.
Whereas most Muslim countries started the month of Ramadan on July 20th, Morocco started the month on July 21th.
Eid al-Fitr falls on the first day of Shawwal, the month which follows Ramadan in the Islamic calendar. It is a time to give in charity to those in need, and celebrate with family and friends the completion of a month of blessings and joy.
Before the day of Eid, during the last few days of Ramadan, each Muslim family gives a determined amount as a donation to the poor. This donation is of actual food -- rice, barley, dates, rice, etc. -- to ensure that the needy can have a holiday meal and participate in the celebration. This donation is known as sadaqah al-fitr (charity of fast-breaking).
On the day of Eid, Muslims gather early in the morning in outdoor locations or mosques to perform the Eid prayer. This consists of a sermon followed by a short congregational prayer.
After the Eid prayer, Muslims usually scatter to visit various family and friends, give gifts (especially to children), and make phone calls to distant relatives to give well-wishes for the holiday. These activities traditionally continue for three days. In most Muslim countries, the entire 3-day period is an official government and school holiday.
The calculations of the Islamic calendar are based on the lunar calendar, which causes the Islamic months to move in the Gregorian calendar approximately 11 days every year. The beginning of Islamic months may also vary from one country to another depending on whether the moon has been sighted or not.
The View from Fez team wish a happy and blessed Eid to all our readers.