MAKKAH/MADINAH: More than three million Muslim faithful attended juma, taraweeh and Qiyamullail prayers at the Two Holy Mosques on Friday as the imam of the Grand Mosque in Makkah called for joint efforts to combat terrorism.
The Haram in Makkah overflowed with worshippers as tens of thousands of faithful had come to perform Umrah and attend special prayers seeking Lailat Al-Qadr, the night of power.
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, accompanied by senior princes, ministers and officials, is in Makkah to spend the last 10 days of Ramadan in the vicinity of Haram.
The king has instructed government departments to mobilize their resources in the service of the guests of God who have come from different parts of the world to perform Umrah and spend the blessed days of Ramadan at the Two Holy Mosques.
Security and traffic departments have deployed more officers around the Two Holy Mosques to maintain law and order and ensure smooth flow of pilgrims. The Health Ministry has made precautionary measures to protect the health of pilgrims from contagious diseases such as swine flu.
Delivering his Friday sermon, Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, imam of the Grand Mosque, urged the faithful to fear God in all walks of their lives. He also urged Muslims to make use of the blessings in the last 10 days of Ramadan by engaging in worship and righteous deeds. “It’s a great blessing of God that we have another opportunity to live in these most blessed days and nights of the year,” he said. “We have to thank God for this blessing by doing good deeds. Are we ready to do that?” the imam asked.
He explained how the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his companions spent the last 10 days of Ramadan. The Prophet used to stay inside the mosque throughout the last 10 days of the holy month, seeking Lailat Al-Qadr. “This night is called Lailat Al-Qadr considering its importance and greatness. It’s better than a thousand months.”
Al-Sudais also spoke about the importance of paying Zakah, the compulsory payment of a specific portion of a person’s wealth. Most Muslims pay their Zakah during Ramadan to maximize their reward.