Ramadan – MESSAGES FROM GAZA NOW – October 2023 – March 2024

11 March 2024

We Used to Have Ramadan

The month of Ramadan for Muslims is a very special and important month. Muslims around the world celebrate it in many ways, and all Muslims fast from dawn to sunset. Who doesn’t know that?

In Gaza too, we used to have a month of Ramadan, and we would begin preparing for it several days in advance. 

We used to buy special decorations and hang them in the streets and inside our homes.

We used to buy special lamps made in Ramadan especially for children.

We used to make Qatayef (very sweet pastry stuffed with nuts and honey) or buy it in Ramadan.

We used to make special meals and invite sisters and brothers and friends to eat and celebrate the month of Ramadan together.

We used to go out and have our sunset meal at the beach if Ramadan fell in the summer or go to restaurants if it was winter.

We used to spend more money in Ramadan because the sunset meal is made up of many different dishes, more than at any other time of the year.

After the sunset meal, children would go out into the streets with their Ramadan lamps celebrating, playing, and arguing over who had the nicest lamp.

Two hours before sunset, we used to take our children to the market to buy the evening’s needs, but mostly to spend and waste the time until sunset.

At Ramadan, families visit each other and exchange gifts between relatives and friends more than at any other time of the year.

At Ramadan people feel more like giving, so poor people receive more charity.

Children love Ramadan and wait for it, especially since it is followed by the festival of Eid, one of the two main feasts for Muslims.

We used to have Ramadan and after the sunset meal, all the families would be stuck in front of their TVs watching soap operas made especially for Ramadan.

Today is the first day of Ramadan.

People do not have any Ramadan decorations.

Children have no Ramadan lamps.

Families do no not have enough food.

There are no markets to purchase things, or to spend time at before sunset.

There are no visits for families or friends.

No gifts are given out.

Poor people do not find any one to give them charity, all people are in need of charity.

Today is the first day of Ramadan and there are no restaurants to have a meal inside, no beach to have a meal outside at sunset.

Ramadan came and there is no electricity, so no TVs and no soap operas to watch.

We used to have Ramadan, but there is no Ramadan this year.

They stole Ramadan from us. They stole the leisure and fun from our children. They stole our lives.