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

As the new moon marks the beginning of the Holy Month of Ramadan, we are called upon to renew our commitment to our shared faith as Muslims and to our shared responsibilities as part of the ummah. 

Ramadan has always been a time for people to come together, but the world has changed in ways we have never imagined. Opportunities to observe the holy month as a community and as a family have been limited by the pandemic, along with recent incidents of displacement in historically conflict-affected areas. 

We face challenges that are unique to the region as we navigate the pandemic, and our community volunteers and health workers continue to bravely work at the frontlines.  Among them are our Muslim brothers and sisters whom we will be breaking the fast with — many of whom may not have the chance to observe Ramadan from the comfort of our own homes or to celebrate Eid with our families. As we reflect during this holy month, let us engage in acts of charity as we reach out to help the most vulnerable among us — those in evacuation sites and informal settlements, and especially those who are left waiting as they struggle to survive against the virus. Let us also offer a prayer for those who have passed away during this pandemic, and comfort those who are dealing with the pain of grief and loss. 

Let us renew our faith in one another, and keep everyone safe as we clothe each other in prayer. In times of weakness, may we draw strength from the assurance of Allah’s grace and mercy. May we endure our fast as we forgo not just hunger and thirst, but also our yearning for those who are far away from us. Let us remember that our bonds go beyond the physical and the present as we act upon our shared obligation to uphold the rights and dignity of every person, with our hearts set on the commandments of Allah and the sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (SAW). In shaa Allah.

Ramadan Mubarak!