Muslims worldwide usually observe the fasting month of Ramadan with big gatherings to break their fast.
Reviving Ramadan gatherings for iftar after two years of COVID restrictions, one of the largest mosques in Europe is serving 500 iftar meals on a daily basis during the holy month.
With a determination to serve others, the East London Mosque delivers iftar meals cooked on-site to 500 people regardless of faith, Arab News reported.
“This year’s Ramadan campaign at the mosque is called ‘Count Our Blessings.’ It’s to recognize how fortunate we are, not only after two years of COVID-19 but also as others in the world face oppression and hardship,” said Dilowar Khan, director of finance and engagement at the mosque.
Any surplus meals are delivered to homeless shelters and hostels to avoid waste and spread goodwill during Ramadan.
The meals, funded by donations, include dates, a main course such as biryani, salad, a side such as a piece of chicken, and a bottle of water.
The ELM, which incorporates the London Muslim Center and the Maryam Center, is also working with its charity partners to ensure iftar meals are provided internationally to the needy.
“The East London Mosque and London Muslim Center will continue to help support those in need throughout Ramadan and beyond, as best as we can to ensure we uphold the values and principles of our Islamic faith,” Khan said.
In addition to the free meals, the mosque runs a food bank which serves more than 100 needy families.
“We have seen this figure rise steadily with a sharp rise in the cost of living, energy and food prices,” said Sufia Alam, head of programs and the Maryam Center.
Alam added that the mosque is open to everyone who need help.
“The mosque continues to support over 200 refugee families living in the borough of Tower Hamlets with food and clothing,” she said.
“We have also helped people who have found themselves stuck in different parts of the country without necessities. We don’t turn people away, and try to help everyone.”
In Ramadan, adult Muslims, save the sick and those traveling, abstain from food, drink, smoking and sex between dawn and sunset.
Generosity and charity are generally blessed in Islamic Shari`ah, however, it’s specially blessed during the month of Ramadan.
Multiplies rewards, for one thing, Ramadan is a blessed month where the rewards for all of our good deeds are multiplied.
Muslims lead similar initiatives to host iftar gatherings worldwide during the month of Ramadan.
In Houston, Police Department cooperated earlier this month with a local Arab American community group to serve hundreds of refugee families hot meals, groceries and toys for Ramadan.