Army hosts Eid'l Adha celebration in Tacurong
John Unson (The Philippine Star) - October 6, 2014 - 1:07pm

TACURONG CITY, Philippines – Members of the Army’s 601st Brigade hosted on Saturday in an unprecedented gesture the celebration by local folks of the Eid’l Adha in their camp in southeast of the city.

Christian soldiers also slaughtered a bull as “kurban” to show sincerity in facilitating the religious event.

The term kurban is Arabic for sacrificial animal, to be butchered for the poor, as part of the traditional rites for two important religious events, the Eid’l Adha, also known as the Islamic feast of sacrifice, and the Eid’l Fit’r, which marks the culmination of the month-long Ramadhan fasting season.

Col. Melquiades Feliciano, commanding officer of the 601st Brigade, on Saturday opened their camp to Muslim villagers for the obligatory open-field Eid’l Adha congregational prayer.

“We want to show to the Muslim communities in the surroundings of our camp and those in towns inside our area of responsibility that we are for peace and solidarity among Muslims and non-Muslims,” Feliciano told reporters.

Feliciano said their activity was supported by his immediate superior, Major Gen. Edmundo Pangilinan of the 6th Infantry Division, who had served as deputy commander for the peace process of the Western Mindanao Command in Zamboanga City before he became chief of 6th ID more than four months ago.

The story about Eid’l Adha and how it became an important religious event in Islam is the same with biblical accounts on how prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) nearly slaughtered his son, Ismael, as ordered by Allah, as a test of loyalty and absolute subservience.

According to the Qur’an, Allah, after having tested Ibrahim’s spiritual dedication, sent down a lamb through Archangel Gabriel, which was offered as a sacrifice instead, sparing the child’s life.

Almost a hundred Moro families participated in Saturday's congregational prayer inside the camp of the 601st Brigade, officiated by military Imams.

The Eid’l Adha also marks the culmination of the yearly hajj (pilgrimage) to Makkah in Saudi Arabia. The religious holiday comes a day after pilgrims from across the world had converged at Arafah, in the periphery of Makkah, for a religious rite.

Performing the hajj, for those who can afford the cost of travel, is one the five pillars of the Islamic faith, which include absolute submission to Allah, praying five times a day facing west, giving of zakat (alms) to the poor, and fasting from dawn to dusk during the 30-day Ramadhan season.

ADHA ARCHANGEL GABRIEL EDMUNDO PANGILINAN EID FELICIANO IBRAHIM INFANTRY DIVISION MAJOR GEN MAKKAH MELQUIADES FELICIANO
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