German IKEA Lends Parking Lot to Local Mosque So 800 Muslims Could Celebrate End of Ramadan Together

An IKEA outlet in Germany is being praised for opening up its parking lot to local Islamic communities so they could celebrate the end of Ramadan while still respecting social distancing guidelines.

Although the nation suspended religious services back in March as a means of curbing the COVID-19 outbreaks, they recently started allowing worshippers to gather in groups of up to 50 people at a time.

These restrictions have prevented many Muslim communities from attending prayer services during the holy month of Ramadan. This weekend in particular was Eid al-Fitr, the holiday marking the end of the month of fasting.

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So as a means of bringing his community together for the traditional Eid prayers and celebration, Kadir Terzi—who is the chairman of the Ditib Wetzlar mosque near Frankfurt—approached the management of a local IKEA and asked if they could host their service in the parking lot.

Although Terzi told BBC that he had not been anticipating much success with the proposition, “the store manager didn’t hesitate for a second and said ‘yes, you can pray’.”

“I was surprised and happy at the same time,” Terzi concluded.

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Terzi then posted an open invitation to the service on social media and reminded attendees to wear face masks, leave their children at home, and maintain at least six feet of social distance.

More than 800 Muslims ended up attending the prayers—and the photos of the event are breathtaking.

“It was a completely different Ramadan month, without contacts, without visits and without breaking the fast together,” Terzi told the news outlet. “[So] the closing prayer with all Muslims in Wetzlar was like a reward for us.”

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