CAIRO: Whoever kills in the name of Islam “does not belong to it” as they commit violent action the religion does not call for, Minister of Religious Endowments (Awqaf) Mohamed Mokhtar Gomaa said during his sermon after the Eid prayer Monday, Youm7 reported.
Eid is a time for Muslims to celebrate the end of Ramadan, a month of fasting, after making a great effort in the religion right, he added. The prayer was attended by President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi and group of ministers, including Prime Minster Ibrahim Mahlab, Minister of Defense Sedky Sobhy and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmed al-Tayeb.
The prayer took place in the air force mosque Monday morning.
In a statement Saturday, Gomaa had warned mosques against delivering any political messages related to upcoming parliamentary elections during their Eid sermons.
“The sermon shouldn’t include any political context, as it should be framed by the religious occasion of the feast,” the ministry statement said.
The ministry announced that it was coordinating with Al-Azhar scholars to distribute trained preachers to official pulpits that were planned to have prayers on the first day of Eid, a three-day festival.
Eid sermons will be standardized to “discuss some of the Islamic principles, especially those related to Ramadan and Eid,” Sabry Ebada, undersecretary of the minster of Awqaf, told Studio Extra television show Friday. He added that the ministry has a plan to control all prayer yards, in order to not give the chance to any unauthorized or non-Azhari scholar to give sermons in open yards.
The official website of the ministry published the standardized sermon Saturday to give scholars the chance to review it before Eid. The sermon title was “Eid controls and ethics” and included many supporting Quran and sunna quotes, and condemned the latest terror attacks on soldiers in Rafah and the Sinai.
On June 29, Minister Gomaa announced the honor code of preaching, setting ground rules to keep political issues out of sermons for all who preach.
The honor code included 8 principles and obliges all scholars abide by the principles or face potential legal repercussions.