Muslims commence holy month of Ramadan

July 31, 2011

Montreal, Quebec, July 31st, 2011- Canadian Muslims, along with Muslims all around the world, will begin the holy month of Ramadan on Monday August 1st 2011, following the sighting of the new crescent in a number of places around the world. Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic lunar calendar, during which Muslims are prescribed to abstain from food, drink and conjugal relations from dawn to sunset.

“Ramadan is a spiritually uplifting and joyous occasion for all Muslims,” said Salam Elmenyawi, president of MCM. “It is a time for Muslims to look inward at their hearts, to see how we can better serve God and all of humanity. Restraining from food and drink during the fast helps to open one’s heart to those in need, to engender compassion and mercy towards others, as well as to increase gratitude and appreciation for all of one’s blessings.”

“Ramadan is also a good opportunity for Canadians to learn more about Islam and Muslims and to help build bridges of understanding and respect in the community.”

Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam, with the other four being the declaration of faith, daily prayers, alms giving and the annual pilgrimage to Mecca. Those fasting arise before dawn to partake in a pre-dawn meal called suhoor and the fast is broken at sunset with a meal called iftar. In addition to increased acts of worship and charity, Muslims also offer supererogatory evening prayers at the mosque, each night of the month.

The end of Ramadan is marked by the celebration of the Islamic holiday of Eid-al-Fitr. This is one of the two major celebrations of the Islamic year, the other being Eid-al-Adha, which commemorates the annual pilgrimage to Mecca.


Salam Elmenyawi

Muslim Council of Montreal (MCM)

Ph.: (514) 748-8427




The Muslim Council of Montreal (MCM) is an umbrella organization representing a number of Islamic institutions in the Montreal region. There are over 250,000 Muslims in Montreal, about 1,100,000 in Canada and 1.9 billion worldwide.