NEW YORK - As Muslims begin the holy month of Ramadan the faithful who come to pray at "the Albanian Islamic Cultural Center on Staten Island" will wear masks and observe social distancing.
Evening prayers will be limited to 50-percent of capacity inside the mosque due to the Pandemic. During Ramadan, Muslims fast and pray for 30-days to deepen their faith.
Tahir Kukaj is the Imam and he's also an NYPD chaplain.
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"We are mandated to look after those in need the homeless people elderly that have nobody to check on them," Kukaj says.
During Ramadan last year the mosque was closed. This year there will be an opportunity for some members of the mosque to pray together.
Ismet Capric and his wife are raising their children in the Muslim faith. He says the practice of fasting during Ramadan is a way to feel closer to God.
"It's about getting your connection with God. One of the ways we do it not eating and drinking the spiritual and emotional side and we avoid things that are our desires," Capric says.
He thinks the Muslim faith can often be misunderstood and wants those unfamiliar with Ramadan to understand this basic principle.
"Religion is teaching us to love one another," Capric says.