How a Female Imam Should Lead a Congregation of Women in Prayer? [Shafi’i School]

Answered by Ustadh Shuaib Ally

Question: How a female Imam should lead a congregation of women in Prayer? Do we recite the Fatiha out loud during maghrib?

Answer: Assalamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

Leading Other Women:

In the Shafi’i school, it is recommended for a woman to lead other women in congregational prayer. Any prayer in which it is recommended for men to pray in congregation, whether an obligatory or sunna prayer, is likewise recommended for women.

Reciting Aloud:

It is recommended for a female Imam leading a congregation comprised of females, not in the presence of unrelated males, to recite aloud in the prayers in which reciting aloud is recommended.

Position of Imam:

It is recommended that the female Imam stand in the middle of the line of the congregation, not ahead of them.

Evidence in Hadith:

-The Prophet (peace be upon him) ordered Umm Waraqah to lead her household in prayer (Abu Dawud).
-Reports that Aisha and Umm Salama led other women in obligatory prayers and stood amongst them (Daraqutni, Bayhaqi)

Source: al-Majmu’