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2018.08.23 Hurricane Lane & the Friday prayer

posted Aug 24, 2018, 12:02 AM by Shereen El-Kadi
Sharing this message from Brother Hakim:

As-salamu alaikum dear brothers and sisters,

By now, I’m sure that you are all aware of the major hurricane that is imminent and that has already affected our neighbor islands, causing major flooding and road closures. Authorities advise us not to be on the road unless necessary.


As such, it is prudent and responsible not to put our community in harm’s way. To ensure a balance between the safety of our community and our religious obligations, we asked our Imam Elshikh to provide a religious opinion for those who are considering missing the Friday prayer. This is his response:

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In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

It is mandatory, and an obligation, to do Friday prayer with Jamaah (congregation) in the masjid, but it is allowed to make zuhr at home in certain conditions mentioned by the scholars. Those conditions include heavy rain, storms and hurricane events which harm Muslims who walk or drive to the mosque to make the Friday prayer in Jamaah.

Hajj:78: "And He has not laid upon you in religion any hardship.”

Al-Baqarah:185: “Allah intends for you ease, and He does not want to make things difficult for you.”

Ibn Qudaamah (may Allah have mercy on him) in his book al-Mughni (1/366) states that it is permissible to leave the Friday congregation prayer due to heavy rain and mud that may harm a person or damage his clothes.

Ibn ‘Abbas said to his mu’azin on a rainy day: “When you utter the words ‘I testify that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah,” do not say, “Come to prayer,” but say “Pray at your homes.” Hearing this (announcement), the people were surprised. He said: “One who was better than me has done it. The Friday prayer is an obligatory duty. But I disliked to put you to hardship so that you might walk in mud and rain.”

Based on that we state that brothers and sisters in Hawai’i have Islamic permission to not attend the Friday prayer at the masjid, and make zuhr prayer (4 rakahs) at home due to the sincere harm caused by Hurricane Lane which is due to hit Hawaii on Friday, August 24, 2018.

Dr. Ismail Elshikh, Imam
Muslim association of Hawaii

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Therefore, while the imam will be performing the Friday prayer at the masjid, we urge all of our community members to use their judgment, be safe, and decide what works best for them.

Fi Amanillah.
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