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Missing Exams and Friday Prayer Due to the COVID-19

Answered as per Shafi'i Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question: Assalamu alaykum

Due to the recent outbreak of the coronavirus, my mother has become very ‘over-protective’; she is not letting me attend the Friday prayer. What should I do? Furthermore, in a few months, I am going to be sitting my exams (once this time and in another 2 years)- these are exams for which I have been learning content for almost 2 whole years- some of these exams are taking place when the Friday prayer happens. What should I do? I cannot find anyone to carry it out personally. Also, if I do find someone in the near future, can you provide me with the minimum khutbah to be said.

Answer: Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question. This recent outbreak has had everybody on edge and rightly so. Your mother is correct that her life will be put at risk if you venture outside unnecessarily as people over 60 can succumb to the disease. The speed with which this virus is spreading is shocking and we are all responsible for doing our part in order to protect others around us.

In the current climate, it is not obligatory to pray the Friday prayer, instead, you can pray dhuhr at home. I believe by now, many Friday prayers around the world have already been canceled. Please see these links:

Guidance on the Coronavirus & Attending the Mosque
The Shafiʿi School On Friday Prayer and Congregational Prayer During Epidemics
Can I Perform Friday Prayer (Jum’a) at Home During the Coronavirus Pandemic?

Considering that schools and non-essential businesses have been suspended in many countries, I am certain that your exam has been delayed by the school or organization. If not, I would call them and tell them that you will need to re-schedule the exam until the danger of the virus as passed. Generally, everything is on hold except for the absolutely urgent. In the US, SAT exams have been delayed and others I am sure.

I ask that Allah protect everyone from this epidemic, and make it a means for us to remember who we are, why we are here and Whom we will return to.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafseer and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterwards, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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