ROMA, KOMPAS.com - The Indonesian Embassy in the Italian capital Rome did not allow the Covid-19 pandemic from getting in the way of its plans to mark the holy Muslim month of Ramadan with a series of events, which was themed 'Rahmah' (Ramadan Full of Blessings).
The Embassy started off Rahmah on Monday, April 12, with Munggahan, a traditional Indonesian ceremony to usher in Ramadan.
Held jointly with the NUR organization (Nadwah Ukhuwah Roma), the Munggahan ceremony was attended by Embassy staff with prayers and forgiving one another, before eating a potluck lunch with food brought by the staff.
While the activity is held with health protocols, including masks and physical distancing between participants, it still did not detract from the meaning of the event.
"Munggahan highlights togetherness and unity, values that transcend religions. In events like this, everyone is welcome," said Indonesian Ambassador to Italy Esti Andayani.
Also read: Ngabuburit, An Indonesian Ramadan Tradition
"The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about the new normal, with the increasing use of online platforms."
She hoped that the Rahmah events "will make this Ramadan meaningful...so as to "become better, stronger and healthier individuals after this pandemic. Not just physically, but also mentally and spiritually."
Aside from Italy, the events are open for Indonesian citizens in countries represented by the Indonesian embassy in Rome, such as Cyprus, Malta, and San Marino, or other countries.
The Rahmah events include "Kabari" (Joint Study of the Indonesian Embassy), or tausiyah [sermons] with Ustad Saepulloh Darusmanwiati, a graduate theology student at Al Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt.