By ALI G. MACABALANG
The world’s estimated 1.9 billion Muslims will celebrate Eid’l Adha in solemn congregations to reckon Prophet Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son Ismael on a divine trial-cum-commandment for him to build what is now known as Kaaba, the Holy Mosque in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, tomorrow.
In the Philippines, Asia’s lone Catholic nation, President Duterte has issued Proclamation No. 56 declaring Monday as a regular national holiday upon the recommendation of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos pursuant to Republic Act No. 9849.
Under the law, Eid’l Adha and Eid’l Fitr (or the end of Ramadhan fasting) are declared regular holidays, being the two most significant events in Islam.
The Embassy of the United States in Manila, meanwhile, announced that its consular offices involved in processing of “previously scheduled visa appointments” will remain open tomorrow but “all other office affiliates” of the embassy will be closed for one day in observance of the Eid’l Adha celebration.
Eid’l Adha or the Feast of Sacrifice falls on the 10th day of Dhul Hijja, the Islamic lunar month during which millions of Muslims across the globe converge at Ka’aba for the spiritually enhancing hajj (pilgrimage) required as one of the five pillars of Islam. Celebrating Muslims observe Edi’l Adha with offerings of animals like sheep, camels, cattle, and other halal animals immediately before the conduct of congregational prayers in recollection of Prophet Abraham’s willingness to slit the throat of his son Ismael in submission to God’s order to build the Ka’aba.