Release Date: 
Friday, July 31, 2020

Eid al-Adha 2020

graphic for Eid Al-Adha

This message is one of many related to our diverse community’s numerous unique holidays, including cultural, historic, and religious observances throughout the year. I am likely to write about the holidays or cultural observances that mean the most to you as they occur throughout the year. Please let me know if you want to learn my plans about a holiday that is specifically important to you.

Eid al-Adha, the Festival of the Sacrifice, is the second of two Islamic Eids or festivals celebrated worldwide each year. The other is Eid al-Fitr at the conclusion of Ramadan. Eid al-Adha is considered the holier of the two. It is the most important festival of the Muslim year.

This joyous holiday also marks the conclusion of the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca, which is one of the five pillars of Islam. The Hajj had to be greatly reduced in the number of participants this year, due to the global pandemic. By some reports, only 1,000 of the normal 2.5 million pilgrims were permitted to participate in person. Safety measures were put in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus. A live stream of part of the event was posted online.

Eid al-Adha honors the willingness of Abraham (or Ibrahim) to sacrifice his son, Ismail, (or Ishmael) as an act of obedience to God.

I wrote about Eid al-Adha in more detail last year, and I encourage you to read it.

When is Eid al-Adha?

Eid al-Adha is always on the same day of the Islamic lunar year: the tenth day of Dhu al-Hijjah, the twelfth month of the Hijri calendar. The date on the Gregorian (western) calendar varies because it is a solar calendar.

This year, Eid al-Adha begins July 31. The festival lasts four days.

This year’s celebration will be different than usual in the United States and around the world. To all who celebrate: Eid Mubarak! Enjoy a safe celebration of the festival with those closest to you.

Russ Kavalhuna