Moroccan butcher sees sales spike for sacred Muslim holiday

By Rob Dozier

RABAT, Morocco — For more than 30 years, Abdeni Mdegdeg has sold meat year-round near the old walled medina of Morocco’s capital city. Now comes the time of year when his services are in the highest demand: the important Muslim holiday Eid Al-Adha, or the “Feast of the Sacrifice.”

“Working as a butcher is a popular profession in Morocco,” Mdegdeg said. “And, it’s a sacred one.”

Especially on Thursday, the day of Eid throughout the Muslim world, when people will partake in tradition of sacrificing sheep or other livestock.

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A Family Celebrates Eid al-Adha

Eid al-Adha, known as the Feast of Sacrifice, is a one of the most important Muslim holidays celebrated throughout the Muslim world. It commemorates the willingness of the prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his first-born son Ismail to Allah. Because of Ibrahim’s unwavering faith, Allah intervened and presented him a sheep to sacrifice instead. Every year it’s custom in Morocco for families to slaughter a sheep or ram in memory of this event. The Mhamdi family, pictured here, is performing the annual ritual together. After three days of feeding and taking care of their ram inside their home, the festival is about to begin.

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