The second went: namaz in the Moscow region had to be carried out twice

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On Friday July 31, Muslims around the world celebrated Eid al-Adha. In Moscow, it was celebrated online – the believers of the capital prayed to the broadcast. Some residents of the Moscow region were more fortunate – some mosques were opened, but on the eve of the Spiritual Directorate of Muslims (SAM) strongly recommended to stay at home. Despite this, in Noginsk, namaz, according to preliminary estimates, gathered from 400 to 600 people. In order to comply with the requirements of Rospotrebnadzor, it had to be carried out in two runs: under prayer, not only the area in front of the gates was freed, but also the parking area.

No loud announcements

The first believers began to flock to the Noginsk Cathedral Mosque even before six in the morning. Eid al-Adha, one of the main holidays in Islamic tradition, since the start of the pandemic, became the first celebration for Muslims that could be celebrated by visiting a mosque.

This week, many were interested in whether the holiday would take place, they came to the mosque, called, – said the Deputy Chairman of the Council of Muftis of Russia Rushan Khazrat Abbyasov.

The morning prayer was not advertised – neither in official statements of the Spiritual Administration of Muslims of the Moscow Region, nor in the media. Only local parishioners who attend Friday prayers were informed that namaz would still take place offline.

In Moscow this year, the holiday was held online, and we did not urge Muscovites to come to our region, we did not announce it anywhere, – explains Rushan Khazrat Abbyasov.

On the eve of the holiday, the mufti throughout Russia recommended that believers stay at home. However, despite this, already by half past seven in the morning it became clear that there are more people willing to perform the festive ceremony than – taking into account the social distance – the mosque and the adjacent territory can accommodate. The Muslims of Noginsk in a matter of 20 minutes dispersed along the paths specially laid out for them on the street.

– Go over there, don’t sit between people, – the volunteer stops a man who was going to “wedge in” 1.5 m between the believers who have already taken their places.

The parishioner sighs, but obediently collects his sajjada – a special mat for prayer – and goes to the indicated place. Soon, not only the square in front of the mosque itself is occupied, but also the parking lot. Those who do not have enough space are accommodated outside the gate of the temple.

In two passes

Volunteers regulate flows and distribute medical masks to those who came without them. People continue to arrive, and there is still half an hour before namaz. Then Imam Rushan Khazrat Abbyasov goes out to the audience with an announcement – the Eid Prayer will be read twice.

“We tried to separate the streams and decided to perform the prayer in two passes so that people would not gather in a crowd,” he told Izvestia. – Eid al-Adha was held behind closed doors, this time we were allowed, observing social distance and other requirements of Rospotrebnadzor, to hold a holiday. Of course, everyone wanted to come and join the prayer.

The second prayer begins at exactly seven, half an hour after the first.

– At this blessed time, together with more than 1.5 billion of our fellow believers around the globe, we raise our hands in prayer and ask the All-Merciful Creator for the granting of peace and prosperity to our planet, for the speedy deliverance from the pandemic and the healing of all sick, – words of the solemn sermons are carried under the vaults of the mosque.

Hear them on the street. Believers are preparing for prayer. Not everyone has enough masks for the second “run”, and some parishioners, who have not found a free space, still manage to squeeze into the “aisle”. However, the situation cannot be called a stalemate – no one had to be deployed and sent home (and such a scenario was foreseen as a last resort, the press service of the Moscow Region Spiritual Directorate reported).

According to the preliminary assessment of Mufti Rushan Hazrat Abbyasov, morning prayer gathered about 200-300 people at each call. In the “pre-coronavirus” times, 3-5 thousand people came to the holiday.

For believers, the social distance at Friday prayers is, of course, unusual, because in Islam it is prescribed to pray shoulder to shoulder – this is a kind of symbol of unity, and the Prophet Muhammad said: “Do not leave empty spaces.” Out of habit, many people automatically want to stand next to them to feel the brotherly shoulder, – noted the press secretary of the DUM MO Stanislav Tokarev. “But there are reasonable prescriptions that are aimed at preserving our lives and our health, so today we prayed in accordance with these rules.

According to him, in general, the requirements of Rospotrebnadzor were met, a team of volunteers helped.

“Our religion calls for security,” one of the believers, Ali Jafarov, shared with Izvestia. – On self-isolation, it was a bit depressing that we pray separately, and not as usual. But time flies quickly, and now we are already meeting Eid al-Adha.

Parishioner Renat Abyanov, in contrast to his co-religionist, the wait for the holiday seemed long.

– The feeling when you come to the mosque again, see the brothers whom you have not met for a long time, echo the prayer, it seems to me, is comparable to what athletes experience when they win competitions and stand on the podium, – he said.

With restrictions

Restrictions this year affected not only Moscow, where the festive prayer was read without parishioners in the Cathedral Mosque. Although this did not stop some believers, they settled down near the building to perform namaz. In St. Petersburg, Tatarstan, Muslims prayed in the open air. Mosques in Dagestan, although open to believers, but on Kurban Bayram, the number of parishioners in them is limited: one person must occupy 4 meters of free space, the media reported. Collective prayers were held in Bashkiria. Before entering the mosque, the temperature was measured, hands were disinfected, and medical masks were distributed.

In the mosque of Novosibirsk, the prayer was held behind closed doors, only the clergy participated in it. The Muftiate of Adygea and Krasnodar Territory has canceled mass prayers. The Muftiate of Chechnya reported yesterday that Eid al-Adha will be held in compliance with strict rules – you can only pray at a distance of 1.5 meters from each other and wearing masks.

Abroad, Muslims also faced restrictions. For example, in Kazakhstan, mosques are closed, namaz was not read in them, local media reported. Only Saudi Arabians were able to make the traditional pilgrimage – Hajj – this year.

But in Turkey, for the first time in 86 years, the morning prayer in honor of the feast of the sacrifice of Eid al-Adha was held at the Hagia Sophia Mosque in Istanbul. The holiday gathered thousands of believers.

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