Guidance pertaining to Congregational Rites in Light of the Spread of Coronavirus (covid-19)

Guidance pertaining to Congregational Rites in Light of the Spread of Coronavirus (covid-19) Friday, 18 Rajab, 1441 AH/13 March, 2020 CE

All praise is due to God, Sustainer of the worlds, and may blessings and most perfect salutations be upon our master Muhammad, and his family.

On the basis of the statements of God, the exalted, “He has chosen you and placed no hardship in your religion” (Qur’an 22:78) as well as “You who believe, obey God and the Messenger, and those in authority among you” (Qur’an 4:59); the hadith of the Messenger of God states:
“Aversion of harm takes priority over acquisition of benefit,” and “Risk of individual harm is endured in order to repel public harm”; the consideration of public welfare in light of the spread of COVID-19 and the need for all segments of the society is to cooperate to combat this disease and halt its dissemination.

Please adhere to the following:
1. It is a religious obligation for all segments of society to strictly adhere to all public health directives and regulations provided by the health authorities, as well as to take all necessary measures to prevent the transmission and spread of the illness. It is impermissible according to sacred law to disregard such directives and measures under any circumstances.

2. It is forbidden by Shariah for anyone infected with this illness, or even one thought to be at risk for infection, to enter public places or go to the mosque for all congregational prayers, including Friday prayers and the Eid prayers. It is an obligation for such a person to take all necessary precautions as outlined by medical authorities, such as observing quarantine and adhering to any prescribed treatment. This is so that one does not transmit the illness to others.
We should ensure we act in light of the following prophetic tradition,“If you hear of an epidemic afflicting a land, do not enter it, and if it afflicts the land you are in, do not leave it.”

All groups and individuals should extend help and support to one another in whatever capacity they are able to do so and not capitalise on such situations by raising prices, particularly as it pertains to pharmaceuticals and healthcare.
Our recommendations are that all places of worship should close until the end of March, when Majlis e Ulama will reassess the situation and give fresh guidance. However, the final decision lies with the Management of the Centres.
In conclusion, we call upon the faithful to, whilst taking all necessary medical precautions, beseech Allah through supplication and istighfaar, as we learn when the Quran quotes Prophet Hud,

“My people, ask forgiveness from your Lord, and return to Him. He will send down for you rain in abundance from the sky and give you added strength” (Qur’an 11:52).
We pray for the speedy relief for all humanity & for the hastening of the reappearance of the Twelfth Imam (aj).

Majlis e Ulama e Shia (Europe) – Press Office