The Philippines although predominantly Catholic, recognizes it’s ethno cultural diversity such that, public holidays are declared for the major ethno-religious & socio cultural blocks in the country. Among them are observance of the two most important Islamic Holidays of the year; Eid-ul-Fitr & Eid-ul- Adha.
Eid-ul-fitr marks the end of Ramadan, one of the five pillars of Islam, happening on the 9th month of the Islamic Lunar calendar believed to be the month when Quran was first revealed. Ramadan is a period of fasting, reflection, devotion, generosity and sacrifice observed by Muslims around the world.
Eid-ul Adha marks the end of Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca), one of the five pillars of Islam, happening on the 10th day of the 12th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. It is a fest commemorating Abraham’s act of supreme sacrifice when Allah asked his son to be sacrificed. Pleased with Abraham’s obedience, a ram eventually took his son’s place.
The Islamic Lunar calendar, also referred to as Hijri Calendar, is a purely lunar calendar of 12 months, based on the phases of the moon. Each lunar month has approximately 29.53 solar days or 354.36 days for 12 months. It is shorter by 10-11 days from the Gregorian Calendar. This explains why Ramadan and the time of Hajj gets earlier each year.
Philippine Public holidays for 2016 & 2017 include these two holidays not as line items in the list but as provisions in the proclamation. The National Commission of Muslim Filipinos is tasked to inform the office of the president of the actual dates depending on the phase of the moon.
2016 Public Holidays (Proc No 1105-BSA)
2017 Public Holidays (Philippine Gazette Proc. No. 50)
Islamic Research Foundation International Inc.