SPEECH: Ramadan (Muslim month of Fasting) 27th May 2017


Ramadan (Muslim month of Fasting)

Mr BURKE (Watson—Manager of Opposition Business) 10-5-2017

On behalf of Labor I want to extend my best wishes to Muslim communities in Australia and around the world, who will soon be observing the holy month of Ramadan. Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic lunar calendar and begins at the sighting of the crescent moon, lasting for 29 to 30 days. At the break of dawn on the first day of Ramadan, Muslims will embark on a month-long journey of fasting, prayer and spiritual reflection. Abstaining from food and drinks, Muslims turn to the Islamic teachings of the Qur'an to re-evaluate their lives and renew their faith in God by giving charity to the less fortunate and strengthening relationships with family. The end of the fasting day is symbolised by the sounding of the call to prayer. After breaking the fast with three dates, according to tradition, family and friends gather to share meals and attend ritual evening prayers at their mosque.

The suburb I live in is Punchbowl, and the suburb next door, Lakemba, is extraordinary during Ramadan. People of all faiths come from all over Sydney, and the suburb is alive the whole night. I would encourage anybody to turn up at any time of night. For the first couple of nights it is very quiet. I would not recommend that you go then; most people are home with their families. But after that, if you are in Sydney during that month, please visit Lakemba at any time of night and you will find that the welcome is very warm and very genuine. So, as the crescent moon appears on the eve of Ramadan, I wish all those who are observing it a blessed and peaceful month of worship, love and prosperity.

Ramadan Kareem.

Tony Burke