Leeds Council buildings turn green to mark first day of Islamic holy month of Ramadan

Civic buildings in Leeds were lit up in green to mark the first day of Ramadan.

Tuesday, 13th April 2021, 5:44 pm

Buildings such as Leeds Civic Hall and Leeds City Museum were illuminated yesterday (Monday) for the Muslim holy month.

Posting the photos on Twitter, Leeds City Council said: "Tonight our civic buildings are lit up in green for the first day of the holy month of Ramadan.

"We hope you can all have a meaningful and peaceful few weeks as we send our Muslim communities here in Leeds and around the world our very best. Ramadan Mubarak!"

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Leeds Civic Hall lit up in green for Ramadan (photo: Leeds City Council).

This year, Ramadan will begin on Tuesday, April 13 and will end on Tuesday, May 11 or Wednesday, May 12.

The council also posted to Facebook: "Ramadan Kareem. With Covid-19 restrictions still ongoing, 2021 Ramadan will be a very different experience for British Muslims.

"Whilst the restrictions will be more relaxed compared to 2020, many of the usual practices normally observed, particularly visiting friends and family indoors, will sadly still not be possible this year.

"We ask Leeds residents to make sure every Iftar (the meal served at the end of the day during Ramadan) is a safe one by following Covid-19 guidelines."

Leeds City Museum lit up in green for Ramadan (photo: Leeds City Council).

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan marks the month when the Quran is said to have been revealed to Prophet Muhammad by God, and is marked by a month-long fast.

Muslims are required to spend a period of 30 days abstaining from food and drink, including water, during daylight hours, as a means of celebrating and reflecting on their faith.

It is one of the five pillars of Islam - the fundamental rules that all Muslims follow - along with the Shahadah (declaration of faith), Salat (prayer), Zakat (charity) and the Hajj pilgrimage.

During Ramadan, there is an increased offering of the Salat, with Muslims giving thanks to Allah, while the fasting ritual allows them to understand the suffering of others.

Those observing the fast are encouraged to read the Quran and the holy text is recited at the Tarawih, special nightly prayers that are held throughout the month.

What do ‘Ramadan Mubarak’ and ‘Ramadan Kareem’ mean?

‘Ramadan Mubarak’ translates from the Arabic word meaning ‘blessed’ - the phrase therefore means ‘blessed Ramadan’. It can often be used to wish someone a happy Ramadan.

‘Ramadan Kareem’ translates as ‘generous Ramadan’ and isn’t used as much as some debate surrounds its meaning.

Some argue that the greeting can appropriately refer to the generosity of acts towards others.

While others consider whether it is appropriate given the principles of fasting throughout the holy month.

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