Muslims celebrate Eid with food and prayer

Crowds gathering at Gloucester Cricket Club
The celebrations began with prayer [BBC]

Muslims across a city have come together to celebrate one of the "most spiritual" days in the Islamic calendar.

A celebration to mark Eid al-Adha was held at Gloucester Cricket Club, with members of the Muslim community praying, socialising, playing cricket and eating together.

One of two Eid celebrations, Eid al-Adha is celebrated by Hajj, or pilgrimage to Makkah in Saudi Arabia.

Organiser of EID in the Park, Salman Khawaja, said the special day also reminds Muslims of a sacrifice made by the Prophet Ibrahim.

Ibrahim had a dream, which he believed to be a message from Allah, asking him to sacrifice his son, Isma'il, as an act of obedience to God.

The devil is said to have tempted Ibrahim by saying he should disobey Allah and spare his son. As Ibrahim was about to kill his son, Allah stopped him and gave him a lamb to sacrifice instead.

In celebration of the festival, Muslims sacrifice an animal such as a sheep or a goat.

In the UK, the animal is killed in a slaughterhouse and distributed equally between family, friends and those in need.

Muslims praying in the park
Eid al-Adha reminds Muslims of "the sacrifice of the Prophet Ibrahim" [BBC]

At the start of Sunday's celebrations, Muslims took part in a group prayer.

"We are all celebrating, this prayer was the beginning of the celebration," Mr Khawaja said.

"All Muslim celebrations we mark as an act of worship. We always go back to the creator, we thank him when we are happy, so this is part of our thankfulness to the creator."

Explaining the significance of the two Eid festivals, Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr, Mr Khawaja added: "The first Eid (al-Fitr) marks the end of Ramadan and about two months and ten days later we have Eid al-Adha.

"It reminds us of the sacrifice of the Prophet Ibrahim."


Pastries were donated by a supermarket and Gloucester residents donated home-cooked dishes such as rice and pasta for those celebrating to enjoy.

Abdul, a Muslim celebrating Eid al-Adha, told the BBC: "Eid is about family, togetherness and making sure we all do our bit for the community.

"The event itself has lots of food, family gatherings and just general good vibes.

"Because it's a cricket ground, people are actually bringing their cricket bats and taking loads of pictures."

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