We should maintain this good tradition,"
Palu, C Sulawesi (ANTARA News) - The community of Arab-descent Indonesians in Palu, Central Sulawesi, on Thursday held an Idul Fitri gathering at Palu`s An Nur mosque attended by hundreds of its members.

The traditional event known locally as "Lebaran Arab" or "Lebaran Iwwadh" (Iwwadh in Arabic means visit by many people) was participated in only by men who came to the gathering mostly dressed in white, complete with white caps.

Always held on the second day of the month of Syawal, the gathering is a centuries-old tradition introduced by Habib Sayyid Idrus bin Salim (SIS) Aljufrie, an Arab from Hadramaut, Yemen, who brought Islam to Central Sulawesi.

In the An Nur mosque, the descendants of Arab immigrants offered prayers and expressed gratitude for all the blessings Allah had bestowed on them.

After the prayers and thanks-giving , they consumed light food such as nuts, boiled eggs, dry cakes or candy washing it down with Arabic coffee.

A number of elderly people on ths occasion also doled out money to children in the congregation.

Ustadz Saggaf Aljufri, a great grand son of Habib Sayyid Idrus bin Salim Aljufri, said the gathering was meant to cement the fraternal relations and exchange Idul Fitri greetings among the community`s members.

"We should maintain this good tradition," said Saggaf Aljufri who is also leader of the Alkhairaat, a social organization set up in 1969.

The Alkhairaat Foundation is growing fast in eastern Indonesia where it has already set up hundreds of public and Islamic boarding schools, hospitals and businesses.

To honor Habib Idrus bin Salim Aljufri, the Palu city administration is now planning to change the name of Palu`s airport from Mutiara to SIS Aljufri. (*)

Editor: Aditia Maruli Radja
Copyright © ANTARA 2011