Eid al-Adha this year coincides with the fasting of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Egypt and the Muslim pilgrims are performing the most important rituals of Hajj. This rituals are commemorating the sacrifice offered instead of Abraham s son. This story is repeated in Egypt where hundreds of thousands have offered their sons for the sake of the homeland.
The sacrifice of Abraham s son and the son of the Virgin are spiritual examples for many fathers and mothers who sacrificed their children as martyrs to Egypt from the battle of Ain Jalut till the 1973 war against the Zionist enemy as well as those who were killed in several terrorist attacks.
The church glorifies the Virgin Mary for her vital role in the incarnation of Jesus Christ and the salvation of mankind. Hence, more than one hundred feasts and festivals are celebrated of the Virgin.
During the fasting of the Virgin and the celebration of al-Adha (the sacrifice) feast, we mourned martyrs and celebrated great heroes. This is normal in Egypt where pain and proud are mixed in the Egyptian personality. Not to mention that most of our victories came while our fasting since we believe that
victory over the self precedes victory over the oppressor.
We do mourn our martyrs praying to God to repose their souls. May God grant us happiness and joy that we fear its outcome. We pray in Egypt that God makes the outcome of joy good.
The virgin Mary is truly adored by the Egyptians and more than 10 big festivals are held for her that are attended by millions of visitors. More than 500 churches and 7 monasteries are named after the Virgin Mary. The church also celebrates her nine times a year in addition to other fixed celebrations.
The Holy Quran also celebrates St. Mary and a whole chapter of Quran carries her name in addition to another chapter carries the name of her family, in addition to may verses of the Quran that tells her story and glorifies her and her son. Al-Imran verse 42 reads: Behold! the angels said: "O Mary! Allah hath chosen thee and purified thee- chosen thee above the women of all nations. May her blessings be with us all, Amen.