The Masjid Al Tawbah at Lowlands, Tobago.

Tobago’s Islamic community plans on having a small but significant Eid-ul-Fitr celebration come Sunday (May 24).

Director of the Masjid Al Tawbah at Lowlands Kameal Ali said the COVID-19 restrictions had forced the adjustment. However, he said the restrictions in place for the virus had served to strengthen the faith of the 100-plus Muslims on the island, whom he said continue to pray daily for T&T.

Ali said 2020 will be a year to remember for everyone since the experience of COVID-19 has taught the lesson of not taking anything for granted. He said things taken for granted are sometimes lost and this requires more faith and trust in God.

Recalling past Eid celebrations at Lowlands, Ali said the period has always been a joyous time when hundreds of Muslims and non-Muslims would gather at the mosque and celebrate in fellowship. He recalled members of various faith attending celebrations and bringing greetings to the community.

Ali said the breaking of the fast or Iftar during Ramadan would sometimes result in a joyous congregation of most of the Islamic community at the mosque, where members of the masjid would all share in the togetherness of Islam.

However, he said the holy month of Ramadan had so far seen a handful of Muslims attending the mosque because of the COVID-19 restrictions.

This year’s celebrations, Ali said, will take place with traditional prayers with five members of the Masjid.

Muslims, however, are being advised to stay at home and celebrate with their families. Ali said when restrictions are lifted they plan to once again hold a large celebration.

He praised Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and the Government for doing an excellent job in managing the spread of the virus. He said the masjid, constructed 25 years ago, received monies from the Government to assist the needy.

Ali said this money was seen as a sacred trust and was distributed to 71 families, both Muslim and non-Muslim, who were among the neediest of the needy on the island.

Ali wishing the entire Muslim community Eid Mubarak and urged all in T&T to be faithful and continue to pray. (SB)