In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
Clarification about the beginning of the Holy month of Ramadhan, 1437 AH
To our dear believers in North America,
After our announcement about the beginning of the holy month of Ramadhan, there have been inquiries about sightings in southern regions of the United States. We would like to inform our dear believers that as part of our deliberation we collect reports of possible sightings and once their authenticity is verified based on religious standards, we make the announcement accordingly. By the time of sunset in San Diego, we received reports that sightings were attempted but the crescent moon was not seen even though the sky was in clear conditions. Therefore, the announcement was made that Tuesday, June 7th, is the 1st of Ramadhan.
As time progressed, we saw some reports circulating about sightings in southern regions. We would like to advise that in such a case, if the individual believers have contentment and certainty with these reports, it becomes a religious obligation for them to act upon it for themselves.
As per Ayatullah Sayyid al-Sistani’s multiplicity of horizons ruling, the impact of a confirmed sighting in a location would be limited to the moon sighting visibility curve of that area only and would have no necessary bearing in the rest of North America for whom Tuesday still remains as the 1st day of the holy month of Ramadhan.
As always, we urge the respected believers as well as honorable scholars, to report their sightings as soon as they see the crescent moon to firstname.lastname@example.org so that the committee can verify the reports and make the appropriate declaration.
By the grace of Allah SWT, and all praise is due to Him, the Crescent Committee is proud to have worked to unify the Shia community since its establishment in 2007. Therefore, we hope that all the members of our community work hand-in-hand to keep this unity strong and to stand together against disunity and division.
We ask Allah (swt) to accept your fasting and good deeds in this holy month and to hasten the Return of Our Master, Imam Mahdi (ajfs).
The Crescent Committee:
• Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi, Toronto, Canada.
• Shaykh Fadhil al-Sahlani, New York, NY.
• Sayyid Mahboob Mehdi Abedi, Chicago, IL.
• Shaykh Muhammed Ja'far Banglori, Miami, FL.
• Shaykh Sabah al-Ebadi, Vancouver, Canada.
To learn about our basis for determining the beginning of lunar months and the theory about the unity of horizons, please click here.
June 6th, 2016
The Moon-Sighting Committee
The Moon-Sighting Committee was established in 2007 by The Council of Shia Muslim Scholars of North America, which annually selects new members to serve on its behalf. It has offered its services to the believers in North America every month since. The current committee was appointed at the Fifteenth Conference of The Council of Shia Muslim Scholars of North America held in Chicago in August 2015.