The holy month of Ramadan came to an end after 30 days of fasting in New Zealand and the community gathered in hundreds at mosques and event centres on Thursday, June 6 to celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr.
Eid is one of the biggest festivals for the Muslim community when the fasting comes to an end and feasting begins for the community.
On the cloudy and chilly morning of Thursday, men, women and children came out in thousands clad in their best ethnic dresses chanting verses from the Quran glorifying the Creator and proceeded towards their nearest mosques or Eidgahs to make congregational two-rakat special Eid prayers.
Once the Imam makes the special Eid prayer, he delivers a sermon delving into deeper meaning and significance of this day and how to maintain the discipline of patience and timeliness of prayers in the following months to come.
A memoriam made for the victims of Christchurch Mosque Attack
Following this sermon, a special dua is made for the prosperity of the community and people then embrace one-another wishing Eid Mubarak.
Part of the celebration besides new clothes is also to invite friends and extended relatives to the house- especially non-Muslim families and share the joy that Eid brings to the community.
New Zealand along with Fiji and Bangladesh were three of the many countries where all 30-days of Ramadan was observed and Eid celebrated on Thursday, June 6 as compared to other nations where the moon was sighted earlier and Eid observed on Wednesday, June 5.
NZ Eid Day gathering at Eden Park
New Zealand Eid Day, a not for profit community organisation based in Auckland hosted its mega Eid celebrations and received over 15,000 people at Eden Park venue.
The stadium premises was full during the prayers on Eid with separate arrangements made for male and female followed by an Eid carnival arranged at the stadium for the families to enjoy the day.
Fun activities included bouncing castles, photo booths, face painting, henna, ethnic clothing and women’s accessories and delicacies from 15-20 different nations serving the best snack and foods of the countries.