Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatu Allah wa barakatu,
My dear brothers and sisters in Islam,
I would first like to extend my best wishes to you and your families. I pray to Allah to enable us to fast the days and pray the nights of Ramadan and may He accept our fasting and good deeds.
Under normal circumstances, this letter would just have been a Ramadan greeting on behalf of the AMA Board (Masjid ar-Rahmah), but this year has been anything but normal.
As you may be aware, the province of Ontario made a new announcement today imposing new restrictions on the indoor capacity in places of worship in hopes of curbing the spread of COVID-19.
As a result of this announcement and after careful reflection, it is with a heavy heart that we announce that Masjid ar-Rahmah will be closed to the public effective at 11:59 PM on Sunday, April 18. That means the final prayer open to the public will be Isha & Taraweeh on Sunday, April 18.
Indeed, these are difficult and challenging times for us all. A year ago, no one could have anticipated that we would still be struggling with this pandemic until now. However, this is the decree (qadr) of Allah and we, as Muslims, believe that nothing happens without Allah’s permission.
Let us reflect on where we were a year ago. Last Ramadan, our masjid was closed and we weren’t able to gather and pray in person. At least this year, alhamdulillah, we were able to enjoy the first week of Ramadan with public Taraweeh prayers, albeit at a limited 15% capacity.
For the nights we got to enjoy in the masjid, we should be grateful to Allah (SWT). It is equally important to seize the opportunity of the two remaining nights of public prayers to make dua and implore Allah (SWT) to take away this calamity.
Despite the upcoming closure of the masjid, we should not become complacent and let down our guard. On the contrary, we still need to respect public health guidelines, practice social distancing, wear a face mask, and do our part to limit the spread.
Most importantly, we can still make the intention of praying in the mosque every night to receive the full reward. Alhamdulilah, this is an opportunity for us to show gratitude and reflect: an opportunity to teach our kids to pray Taraweeh at home, to learn the etiquettes of Ramadan, to recite the Qur’an and to increase in acts of worship.
Despite the challenges we are facing, our masjid will still be active. We will continue to provide many programs and activities for our community. You can participate in these activities virtually from your home. This Ramadan, we will do our best to bring our masjid to you.
We ask Allah to keep us all safe and to accept our deeds.
تقبل الله منا ومنكم صالح الأعمال
President, AMA Board