Egypt's Al-Azhar mosque (Photo: Reuters)
Egypt’s prestigious Al-Azhar mosque said it would live stream the evening Tarwaeeh prayers on Facebook and Youtube amid a suspension of communal prayers over coronavirus fears.
Taraweeh prayers – typically performed at mosques after the fast-breaking meals during the holy month of Ramadan - will be performed at Al-Azhar mosque during the last ten days of Ramadan but will only be restricted to the mosque’s imams and workers.
The prayers will be streamed live on the mosque’s official Facebook page and Youtube channel, Al-Azhar said in its statement.
The last ten days of Ramadan are considered the holiest and most spiritual by Muslims. During them, believers observe “Laylat Al Qadr” which marks the night on which God revealed the Quran to the Prophet Mohammed for the first time.
Egypt is seeing a Ramadan like never before this year with restrictions to contain the coronavirus pandemic in place including an extended nighttime curfew.
Egypt has banned all congregational religious activities, including the regular communal prayers at mosques, since 21 March.
Other traditional public activities that used to take place in Ramadan, such as charity iftar tables for the poor to break their fast, have also been suspended. The ban also applies to itikaf ritual in which believers seclude themselves in mosques for an extended period.
On Saturday, Egypt’s religious endowments ministry said it would start Sunday the radio broadcasting of the evening and the Taraweeh prayers from Cairo’s famous Mosque of Amr Ibn Al-‘As.
According to the ministry, the prayers will only be attended by the mosque’s imam and two mosque workers, and will be broadcast on Al-Quran Al-Kareem radio station.