Muslims are campaigning for fellow believers to create “mini mosques” inside their homes this Ramadan, as places of worship shut their doors due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A group of leading Muslim organisations in the UK and US launched the Mini Mosque campaign on Sunday.
The campaign “seeks to encourage parents and spouses all over the world to bring joy and happiness to their children and families by crafting ‘mini’ prayer spaces”, said Muhammad Sattaur, Founding Executive Director of the Imam Ghazali Institute.
US-based Imam Ghazali Institute and the UK-based City of Knowledge Academy spearheaded the campaign.
“We’ve seen tremendous love and support for the idea. It seems very natural and unifying to come together on the premise of building a fun engaging family environment for our children in the comfort of their own home,” Sattaur told The New Arab.
As of Thursday, 3915 families around the world had pledged to join the campaign. The main initial push is to occur on Friday when the holy Muslim month of Ramadan is expected to start.
Thousands of families across 15 different countries are expected to participate.
“Covid-19 has changed so many things for our community and I know that many are feeling that Ramadan won’t be the same,” Shaykh Mohammed Aslam, founder of the City of Knowledge Academy, told The New Arab.
“This Mini Mosque campaign aims to make sure that families around the globe have a Ramadan filled with positivity, enjoyment, joy and happiness,” he added.
“The mosques may be closed but the doors of Allah’s mercy forever remain open – and each and every one of us can experience these blessings, illuminations and beauty by setting up prayer areas in our homes so we can reconnect our hearts and the hearts of our young to worship.”
Muslims have been sharing their own mini mosques under the hashtag #minimosque.
The campaign has received support from scholars and Muslim communities around the world. Shaykh Aslam said the “President of Masjid al-Aqsa, the deputy head of Fath al-Islami in Syria, a senior teacher from Dar al-Mustafa in Yemen, a scholar from the lineage of Shaykh ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Jaylani in Baghdad” have all shared their support.
As Ramadan begins with the new moon later this week, Muslims around the world are trying to maintain the cherished rituals of Islam’s holiest month without further spreading the outbreak.
At the heart of Ramadan is the sunrise-to-sunset fast, meant to instil contemplation of God. But alongside the hardship of abstaining from food and drink for hours every day, the month sweeps everyone up into a communal spirit.
This year will undoubtedly be different, and instead of gathering for large meals at sunset, many families and friends will be seeking each other’s company online.
Worshippers will also be praying with their families in their own “mini mosques” instead of going to mosques for hours of evening prayers.