For the fifteenth year in a row, after the prayers of Maghreb and Isha of Saturday the 29th of Dhu al-Hijjah 1440 AH corresponding to August 31, 2019, the rituals of the replacement of the two domes' flags of the holy shrines of Aba Abdillah al-Hussayn and his brother Aba al-Fadl al-Abbas (peace be upon both of them) from the red to black, were held to announce the start of the holy month of Muharram 1441 AH.
The ceremony was attended by a large number of religious and cultural figures, as well as a large number of followers of Ahl al-Bayt (peace be upon them) who filled the two holy shrines and the square between them.
And as usual, the beginning of the Ashura rituals was in the shrine of the Master of martyrs and the father of the free; Imam al-Hussayn (peace be upon him), which began with the recitation of verses from the Holy Quran followed by the word of the Senior Official of the Holy Shrine of Imam al-Hussayn (peace be upon him); His eminence Sheikh Abd al-Mahdi al-Karbala'i, in which he extended his condolences to the visitors and the lovers and followers of Ahl al-Bayt (peace be upon them) all over the world, emphasizing on the important of preserving the principle of enjoining the good and forbidding the wrong in continuation of the reform march held by Imam al-Hussayn (peace be upon him).
This was followed by an elegy delivered by Sheikh Dhaher al-Khaqani, and on a sad funeral tune, the red flag was lowered to replace it with the black flag, while the believers were repeating "Labbayka ya Hussayn!" Followed by the historical poem of the late Sheikh Hadi al-Karbala'i in receiving this month "Ya Shahr 'Ashoor [O month of Ashura]" by the late radood Hamza Zghayyar.
Then the groups headed to the shrine of Aba al-Fadl al-Abbas (peace be upon him) to perform the rituals of replacing flags, similar to the rituals in the imam al-Hussayn's (p) holy shrine.
The word of the al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine was delivered by its Senior Official; Sayed Ahmad al-Safi, in which he extended his condolences to the Master of the Order and the Time; Imam al-Mahdi (may Allah hasten his holy reappearance) and then he highlighted the secret of the eternity of the Hussayni matter, which is revived during this Ashura season every year.
Then, as it is the tradition since eleven year, a symbolic banner from one of the governorates of Iraq is handed to the General Secretariat of the al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine. This year, the banner was offered from the city of the Commander of the Faithful (peace be upon him); Najaf, and was handed over to the Senior Official of the al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine; his eminence Sayed Ahmad al-Safi.
The closing of this ceremony was a condolences' Council of the Radood Sayed Hasan al-Karbala'i, marking the beginning of the sorrow Hussayni season.