Muharram 2020 1442 A.H.

Muharram 2020 1442 A.H.

On behalf of the Shia Muslim Council of Southern California, we would like to announce that the first day of Muharram 1442 AH will be Thursday, August 20th, 2020. The crescent moon was sighted during sunset on Wednesday, August 19th, 2020 in San Diego, CA and Houston, TX.

Key dates for the Month of Muharram

2 Muharram – Imam Hussain (p) arrives in Karbala (61 A.H.)
7 Muharram – Water is cut off from Imam Hussain (p), his family, and his companions
10 Muharram (Aug. 30th) – Day of Ashura; Martyrdom of Imam Hussain (p) (61 A.H.)
13 Muharram – Burial of Imam Hussain (p) & his companions in Karbala (61 A.H.)
25 Muharram – Martyrdom of Imam Ali ibn Hussain (al-Sajjad) (p) (95 A.H.)
Ashura – A Timeless Symbol of Universal Social Justice
In the year 60 AH, leaving his much-loved city of Madinah, Imam Hussain (as) declared, “Indeed, I am leaving Madinah to reform the ummah of my grandfather.”  Sadly, less than half a century after the passing of the Prophet of Islam, those who purported to follow him had now compelled his dear grandson to stand up against them for truth and justice. Pristine values promulgated by the Quran were being flouted with impunity by those who had usurped the leadership of the Muslim Community.   
It is in that context that the great tragedy of Karbala played out, leaving Imam Husein (as) all alone, fighting for truth and justice against Yazid, the tyrant of the time. As his companions and family members lay dead on the plains of Karbala on the 10th of Muharram 61 AH, known as the Day of Ashura, he called out: ‘who is there who would help us”, on the day of Ashura. Today, our Muharram commemorations are our way of responding to his call. The Day of Ashura is central to the proclamation of the universal truths espoused in Karbala. History tells us that when moral principles taught by the holy Prophet of Islam were on the verge of destruction, treachery and injustice became common, Imam Hussein’s exposed the corruption of the Umayyad government. In return, they mercilessly slaughtered him and his companions in Karbala.
Ashura teaches us that we can never reconcile with an unjust authority, whether Muslim or non-Muslim. This singular focus on Ashura day, exclusively as an international call for social justice honoring Imam Husein (AS), will enable all Muslims to send a loud and a unified message this Muharram,  that we refuse to tolerate the despots of yesterday and today.
The concept of social justice, in this period of a worldwide pandemic, has acquired a new facet. For centuries remembrance of the tragedy of Karbala has continued to draw ever-increasing crowds to Huseiniyas and Islamic centers around the world as soon as the Muharram crescent is sighted. Sadly, this year, given the Covid-19 contagion, we have been forced  to resort to virtual commemorations to keep safe and save our own lives and those of others. Thus, in that context today social justice also means social distancing – to protect ourselves and others from harm. Most scholars agree that in difficult times such as now, avoiding gatherings is a prudent and a pragmatic step. Our faith places an extremely high value on the sanctity of human life, and we must all exercise an abundance of caution by ensuring we do not expose ourselves and others to the danger and risks presented by public or private gatherings during the forthcoming commemoration of Muharram. 
The Noble Prophet (saw) has said:
“The destruction of the entire dunia (world) is easier to Allah than the killing of one person with no justification.”
SMC applauds Centers in Southern California, who have comprehended their fiduciary duties to maintain and promote a safe environment, have decided to offer virtual commemorations and not potentially expose Community members, especially the vulnerable, elders, and infants and immune-compromised individual to the dangers of the virus. In consultations with its Member Organizations and collaboration with Imamia Medics chapters in California, SMC has issued an advisory for the guidance of the Community in Southern California.
We pray for humanity to be spared from this pandemic and send special prayers and duas for a full recovery to those afflicted by Covid-19.  May Allah enable everyone to continue remembering the sacrifices in Karbala and paying homage to Imam Hussain (AS) through virtual commemorations and at home with their families.

Read the Islamic Shura Council of Southern California’s Statement on Recognition of Muharram as an important month for all Muslims
Live Online Programming
This year, the holy month of Muharram will be a very different experience for us all since we will be unable to have programs at our masjids and centers. Social distancing has required all of us to alter our lifestyles including how we stay engaged during the month of Muharram.

SMC is pleased to present a consolidated site of all the live programmings during the month of Muharram, SMC Live. 

SMC Live will provide a one-stop platform to see all the live programs on one site. Weather you are looking for English, Farsi, Arabic or Urdu programs, just go to

We will be adding additional live programs from surrounding regions to provide the community more options. Your feedback is welcome at
Truth of Fasting on Ashura Day:Many Muslims insist on the importance of fasting on the day of Ashura. This article studies the origin and validity of fasting on the day of Ashura and whether it can be considered a genuine sunnah of the Prophet.
Truth of Fasting on Ashura Article Here
Donate Blood this Muharram
“Whoever saves the life of one human being, it shall be as if he had saved the whole of humankind.” (Holy Quran, 5:32)
Register to Donate Blood
Inshallah, next weekend on Sunday August 23rd, we will have a blood drive at Zainabia Islamic Society in Pomona and the weekend after on Sunday August 30th, at Masjid Rasool in SImi Valley and Jafaria Islamic Society in Anaheim. 

Please sign up as soon as possible as we need to fill these donations spots. 

We are taking extraordinary COVID precautions to ensure your safety; this includes only two donors allowed on a bus at a time, face masks required by staff and donors, temperature checks, sanitizers, and screening of all staff, volunteers and donors. Covid antibody testing is a valuable benefit included. 
Register to Donate Blood
Jazakum Allahu Khayran,
Shia Muslim Council of Southern California
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