International (MNN) — Ramadan begins tonight. This holy month of fasting from sunup to sundown is one of the five pillars of Islam. More Ramadan headlines here.
“Muslims around the world are taught in the Quran if they do certain things, follow certain practices, maybe they could do enough to be accepted into heaven by God,” Prayercast’s Chris Ruge explains.
“Over the course of this month, they want to be nearer to God and try [to] earn His favor.”
Millions of Muslims are expected to participate in Ramadan this year. Still, Saudi Arabia – home to Mecca and Medina – announced that only people who receive COVID-19 vaccines can enter the holy sites during the sacred month. The United Arab Emirates shut down tent activities to prevent public gatherings.
It’s hard to keep track of pandemic rules for an event of this size. “We’re talking about roughly 20-percent of the world’s population, spread out [across the world],” Ruge says.
“That includes [Muslims in] areas that are starting to open up again, to places that are in intense lockdowns for the third or even fourth time.”
Isolation is a crucial part of pandemic regulations, but it flies in the face of the Ramadan tradition. “Community is a huge part of Ramadan,” Ruge explains.
“It’s before sunup and after sundown, where the fast is broken, where community is so important and, in many places, that’s not possible right now.”
As followers of Islam begin their Ramadan fast, you can intercede for their salvation.
“We’re inviting people to join us in praying through Ramadan,” Ruge continues.
“They can sign up to receive a daily email and a new video every single day through Ramadan at LoveMuslims.org.”
Header image courtesy of Prayercast.