Ramadan in Sweden
Islam has spread all over the world, so that it became the second religion in Sweden and other countries in the Northern Pole. Sister Na?ilah, the founder and head of Muslim Women Assembly in Sweden, tells us about Ramadan ceremonies in Sweden and the problems that face them there as a Muslim minority:
‘As for the problem that face Muslims here, it is the issue of sighting the new moon of Ramadan; this causes a lot of problem and stirs arguments due to the lack of a center body on which all Muslims will rely for this important issue. Yes, there is an Islamic center here, but its services cannot cover all Muslims dispersed in different places, besides, the Swedish media renders no assistance. However, people mostly follow the crescent sighting in Makkah, to know the beginning of Ramadan and the day of ?Eid.
There is a big difference between the way of celebrating Ramadan in all Scandinavian countries and in other European countries, because the number of Muslim minority in the former is somehow lower than the number of Muslims in the latter. Yet, despite the few number of Muslims here in Sweden, Ramadan forms a very special spiritual occasion, which all Muslims nail-bitingly wait for from year to year. No sooner had the Muslim scholars sighted the crescent of Ramadan than people begin to congratulate one another and set forth to perform Taraweeh Prayer at the nearest mosque, or say, some places hired by Muslims for prayer, for there are no mosques. In these places, Muslims hold sessions in which they remember Allah throughout Ramadan.