In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

This year, we welcome Ramadan at a time of uncertainty. Not only are we fighting against a virus that was once unknown; we are also fighting poverty that has long plagued our people, as we work through a political transition.

Our weaknesses are revealed whenever we decide based on what we see, what we know, and what we have. That all this can change in an instant makes room in our hearts for fear that tests our faith.

More than ever, this year’s Ramadan is a time for us to remember what it means to have faith.

Faith means opening our eyes to the unseen, for what we see is limited by what we look at. The poorest are oft pushed to the margins, invisible in the midst of the mundane. Faith requires opening our minds to the unknown, for what we know is limited by what we perceive. The needs of the most vulnerable are often unaccounted for as the elderly, women, and children are reduced to statistics.

Faith means giving despite the fear of not having enough, when what we have is nothing compared to the provision of Allah who gives without measure. Our generosity must match our faith in Him who provides, and not limited by our own desires.

As we begin our fast, let us surrender our fears and act according to our faith. As we heed the call to prayer, let us prostrate in submission and stand in solidarity with the ummah. As we give, let us remain modest while we honor Allah with our actions.

May this year’s Ramadhan strengthen our resolve and renew our spirit, as our faith finds assurance in the fulfillment of the promises of Allah. Ramadhan Mubarak.