Procession and celebrations of Prophet Mohammed's birthday in Sudan


Your browser is not supported by this application. Please use recent versions of browsers such as Google Chrome, Firefox, Edge or Safari to access 'Dive' interfaces.

Inscribed in 2023 (18.COM) on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity

© House of Heritage (HofH), Sudan, 2022

Al-Molid procession is a celebration of the Prophet Mohammed that takes place in Sudan. The celebration starts twelve days before the Prophet’s birthday, in the third month of the Islamic lunar calendar. It begins with a procession of thousands of men, women and children, community leaders, government officials, army and police forces and music corps. During the parade, participants perform religious and mystical songs and ritual dances and recite Sufi prayers. The celebration culminates in al-Molid square, a large open-air space decorated with lights and flags and covered in prayer rugs. Upon arrival, the crowd hangs a flag by a very tall pole. The celebrations are then launched by an official speech. Participants enjoy the performances and traditional food and buy their children candies and toys. Al-Molid and the related practices, knowledge and skills are transferred within families and dance circles, through participation in the events, and through modern education and mass media. The event is an opportunity for different Sufi orders to express their solidarity. However, it is celebrated by the entire country, thus uniting people from different religions. The square itself serves as a meeting spot for people to chat, celebrate, entertain and enjoy cuisine from different parts of Sudan.