Opening ceremonies for a new masjid

Reference: Fatāwa Islāmiyyah Vol. 1 Page 18

Question: When a new Masjid is built near us, and they intend to begin praying Ṣalāh, people from neighbouring towns are invited. They then gather for what is called: the opening of the Masjid.

What is the ruling of attending for this purpose?

Does the Ḥadīth: “a journey is not undertaken except to three Masājid…” indicate its prohibition?

If this action is permitted, what is the evidence for it?

Is this action permitted due to the Ḥadīth that the Prophet ﷺ was called by some of the Companions to pray outside their house so they could make it a place of Ṣalāh.

In addition to the above, can we establish its allowance from the story of Masjid Dirrār, [1] the fact that our Lord did not forbid to visit it – as a place – rather the prohibition was because it was built for the purpose of causing harm and Kufr.

Response: All praise is for Allāh. mosques are opened by praying Ṣalāh in them, maintaining them with the remembrance of Allāh, reciting Qur’ān, Tasbīḥ, Taḥmīd, Tahlīl, teaching Islamic knowledge and other actions which contain honouring the status of mosques. 

Allāh, the High, said,

{In houses (mosques) which Allāh has ordered to be raised and that His name is mentioned; exalting Him within them in the mornings and evenings. By men whom neither trade nor sale distracts from the remembrance of Allāh, from performing Ṣalāh nor from giving the Zakāh. They fear a day when hearts and eyes will [fearfully] turn about – that Allāh may reward them according to the best of their deeds, and increase them out of His Grace. And Allāh provides without measure to whom He wills} [24:36-38]

[Mosques are opened] in these and similar ways: by offering advice, admonishments and consultation. The Messenger of Allāh ﷺ used to maintain the mosques like this, and he was followed in that by the rightly-guided caliphs, the other Companions, the Imāms of guidance after him – may Allāh be pleased with them and have mercy on them. All goodness is in following their guidance and adhering to their example in opening mosques and maintaining them as they did, with acts of worship and other similar rituals of Islām.

It has not been narrated that the Prophet ﷺ or any of the scholars of guidance opened a Masjid with celebrations or invitations like what people do nowadays: gathering from all over the country when the building is complete to celebrate it. If that was a praiseworthy action, the Messenger of Allāh ﷺ would have been the first to do it and he would have legislated it as Sunnah for his ummah, and the rightly-guided caliphs and the scholars of guidance who came after him would have done it too. And had that taken place, it would have been narrated.

Due to this, such ceremonies should not be conducted, neither should the invitations be accepted; nor should the organising [of such events] be supported financially or otherwise. So, goodness is in following the Salaf (pious predecessors] and evil is the Bid’ah of those who came after them.

The fact that one of the Companions invited the Messenger of Allaah ﷺ to his house to pray two Raka’āt so that he could take that as a Muṣallah for Nafl prayers is not an evidence to justify this modern practice of what is today known as “opening ceremonies.” This is because the Companion did not invite the Prophet ﷺ to a ceremony, rather he invited him to pray Ṣalāh, neither did the Prophet ﷺ undertake a journey to pray that Ṣalāh.

In addition to this, undertaking a journey to attend that celebration or even for Ṣalāh in that Masjid comes under the general prohibition of traveling to pray in mosques other than the three known mosques. [2]

So we should avoid such innovated customs and be content with regards to mosques and other matters with what was done at the time of the Messenger of Allāh ﷺ and the scholars of guidance – may Allāh have mercy on them. 

Footnotes

[1] Masjid Dirār was a Masjid built by the Munāfiqāūn during the time of the Prophet ﷺ to cause harm to the Muslims and spread Kufr.

[2] The three mosques being al-Masjid al-Ḥarām in Makkah, al-Masjid al-Nabawī in Madinah and Masjid al-Aqsa in Jerusalem.


حفلات افتتاحية للمساجد الجديدة

المرجع: اللجنة الدائمة من كتاب فتاوى إسلامية 1/18

السؤال: إذا بُني عندنا مسجد جديد وأريد ابتداء الصلاة فيه دُعي الناس من البلدان المجاورة فيجتمعون لهذا الذي يسمونه افتتاح المسجد ، فما حكم إتيانهم لهذا الغرض ؟ وهل حديث : “لا تُشد الرحال إلا إلى ثلاثة مساجد …” يدل على تحريم ذلك؟ وإذا كان جائزاً فما الدليل على ذلك ؟ وهل حديث أن النبي ﷺ دعاه بعض الصحابة ليصلي ناحية من بيته ليتخذها مصلّى … يدل على جوازه ؟ وكذلك هل يدل عليه مفهوم ما جاء في قصة مسجد الضّرار بحيث لم يوجه ربنا نهيه إلى مجرد عزمه على الذهاب ، وإنما نهاه لأن المسجد لم يُبن إلا ضراراً وكفراً ؟.

الحمد لله افتتاح المساجد يكون بالصلاة فيها وعمارتها بذكر الله ، من تلاوة قرآن والتسبيح والتحميد والتهليل وتعليم العلوم الشرعية ووسائلها ونحو ذلك مما فيه رفع شأنها الجواب:

قال الله تعالى : }فِي بُيُوتٍ أَذِنَ اللَّهُ أَنْ تُرْفَعَ وَيُذْكَرَ فِيهَا اسْمُهُ يُسَبِّحُ لَهُ فِيهَا بِالْغُدُوِّ وَالْآَصَالِ * رِجَالٌ لَا تُلْهِيهِمْ تِجَارَةٌ وَلَا بَيْعٌ عَنْ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَإِقَامِ الصَّلَاةِ وَإِيتَاءِ الزَّكَاةِ يَخَافُونَ يَوْمًا تَتَقَلَّبُ فِيهِ الْقُلُوبُ وَالْأَبْصَارُ * لِيَجْزِيَهُمُ اللَّهُ أَحْسَنَ مَا عَمِلُوا وَيَزِيدَهُمْ مِنْ فَضْلِهِ وَاللَّهُ يَرْزُقُ مَنْ يَشَاءُ بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ{

بهذا ونحوه من النصائح والمواعظ والمشورة كان يعمرها رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ، وتبعه في هذا الخلفاء الراشدون وسائر صحابته وأئمة الهدى من بعده رضي الله عنهم ورحمهم ، والخير كل الخير في الاهتداء بهديهم في الوقوف عندما قاموا به في افتتاح المساجد ، وعمارتها بما عمروها به من العبادات وما في معناها من شعائر الإسلام

ولم يثبت عنه ﷺ ولا عمن اتبعه من أئمة الهدى أنهم افتتحوا مسجداً بالاحتفال وبالدعوة إلى مثل ما يدعوا إليه الناس اليوم ، من الاجتماع من البلاد عند تمام بنائه للإشادة به ، ولو كان ذلك مما يُحمد لكان رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ، أسبق الناس إليه ولسنّه لأمته ولتبعه عليه خلفاؤه الراشدون وأئمة الهدى من بعده ولو حصل ذلك لنُقل

وعلى هذا فلا ينبغي مثل هذه الاحتفالات ، ولا يُستجاب للدعوة إليها ولا يُتعاون على إقامتها بدفع مال أو غيره ، فإنّ الخير في اتباع من سلف ، والشر في ابتداع من خلف ، وليس في دعوة بعض الصحابة رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم إلى بيته ليصلي في مكان منه ركعتين كي يتخذه صاحبه مصلى يصلي فيه ما قدر له من النوافل دليل على ما عُرف اليوم من الاحتفال لافتتاح المسجد ، فإنه لم يدعه إلى احتفال بل لصلاة ولم يسافر لأجل تلك الصلاة ، ثم السفر إلى ذلك الاحتفال أو للصلاة في ذلك المسجد داخل في عموم النهي عن شد الرحال إلى غير تلك المساجد الثلاثة المعروفة ، فينبغي العدول عن تلك العادة المُحدثة ، والاكتفاء في شؤون المساجد وغيرها بما كان عليه العمل في عهد رسول الله ﷺ وأتباعه أئمة الهدى رحمهم الله .

http://www.SalafiEventsUK.com

He is a graduate of the Islaamic University of Madeenah, having graduated from the Institute of Arabic Language, and later the Faculty of Sharee'ah in 2010. He currently resides in Nelson, Lancashire.