Eid al-Adha is a four-day Islamic festival starting on the 10th day of the month of Dhul Hijja. It honors the willingness of Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son, as an act of obedience to God’s command. Before he sacrificed his son God intervened by sending his angel Jibra’il (Gabriel), who then put a sheep in his son’s place. In commemoration of this, an animal is sacrificed and divided into three parts: the family retains one third of the share; another third is given to relatives, friends and neighbors; and the remaining third is given to the poor and needy.
Eid al-Adha celebrations start after the descent of the Hujjaj, the pilgrims performing the Hajj, from Mount Arafat, a hill east of Mecca. Eid sacrifice may take place until sunset on the 13th day of Dhu al-Hijjah. The days of Eid have been singled out in the Hadith as “days of remembrance” and considered the holiest days in the Islamic Calendar.
The Eid prayer consists of two rakahs: during which the ‘Imam’ leading the prayer does ‘takbir’ (Allah-o-Akbar) seven times after the opening ‘takbir’ and before the recitation of the Surah Al-Fatehah in the first rakah. During the second rakah, the ‘takbir’ is to be declared five times before the recitation of the Surah Al-Fatehah. After the prayer a khutbah is addressed to the congregation
Imam Dr. Wael Shehab
As a graduate of the well-reputed Al-Azhar ash-Sharef in Egypt, Imam Dr. Wael Shehab has studied, throughout all his educational stages, all the Islamic Sciences. He holds a PhD in Islamic Studies from Al-Azhar University. Currently, Dr. Shehab is the resident Imam of Masjid Toronto.