Bosnia's Muslims celebrate Eid al-Adha adhering to coronavirus measures


Muslims across Bosnia and Herzegovina are celebrating Eid al-Adha or the ‘Festival of Sacrifice' on Friday, but this year without any massive gatherings due to the coronavirus crisis.

Usually, the holiday includes early morning prayers in mosques, coffee and sweets with family and friends.

The morning Eid prayers and sermons took place in mosques throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina this year as well but was only attended by the imams, muezzins and members of the congregational committees while other believers were urged to respect measures introduced to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and pray at home.

The central Eid prayer in Sarajevo took place at the Gazi Husrev-beg Mosque, with the Head of Bosnia’s Islamic Community, Husein Kavazovic, delivering his sermon.

In Banja Luka, Mufti Nusret Abdibegovic said in his sermon that the holidays are days when people should turn to God and remember his grace and gifts.

In the area of Srebrenica, the Eid prayer took place in seven mosques while the central Eid prayer was held at the White Mosque. Prayers were also organised in Potocari, Suceska, Luka, Osmace, Dobrak and Osat.

The central Eid prayer in Zenica was held this morning in the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, with Mufti of Zenica, Dr. Mevludin Dizdarevic, delivering his sermon.

The Eid prayer in Mostar took place in 39 mosques and masjids while the central prayer was held at the football stadium of the University-Sports-Recreation Center ‘Midhat Hujdur Hujka’. In his sermon, Mostar’s Mufti Salem Dedovic spoke about the importance of confronting the consequences caused by coronavirus across the world and pointed to the Islamic principles of responsibility, common sense and the necessity of searching for scientific solutions in all the trials facing humanity.

Eid al-Adha, in Bosnia called Kurban Bayram, is the second of two Islamic holidays celebrated worldwide each year, with Eid al-Fitr being the other.

It honours the willingness of Ibrahim (Abraham) to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to God’s command. Before Abraham could sacrifice his son, God provided a lamb to sacrifice instead.

Muslims commemorate this intervention by sacrificing an animal and dividing it into three parts – one to keep for home, one to give to relatives and the third to the poor.