Can someone describe a worship service in a mosque?

I don’t know anything about how a service is performed at a mosque?
The weekly service is Friday? Is that considered their Sabbath?
Do they sing?

The men and women are separated correct?

Friday isn’t considered any sort of Sabbath for Muslims.

The men and women are generally separated. No singing as far as I know.

Generally Friday prayer will consist of prayers, a talk by an imam, and a reading from the Quran.

Muslim’s don’t observe any kind of sabbath. We’re forbidden from working on Fridays, as per the command in surah al Jummuah [surah 62:9], but that’s not the same as the sabbath that the jews observed. On Fridays, muslims go to their local mosque, sit on the floor and wait until the khatib [preacher] arrives. The call to prayer is anounced and then the khatib preaches a sermon. After that, a second call to prayer is announced and everyone gets up and prays in unison.

Yes, men and women are segregated during the prayer. That was the practice of prophet Muhammad and his community, so we do the same. A child is permitted to be with a parent of the opposite sex, though. A woman can pray with her child, irrespective of the child’s sex; likewise, a man can pray with his child, irrespective of the child’s sex.

There’s no singing involved, but the Qur’an is recited during the prayer; and if you’ve ever listened to a Qur’an recitation before, you’ll know that it’s recited in rhythmic tones, which is somewhat similar to singing. After the prayer is done, you’re free to leave, donate money, chill out and read a book, make optional devotional practices, etc.

Is there some sort of exemption for working Fridays based on circumstances? I only ask because I live in Canada and I know Muslims who work all the time on Fridays.

I’ve heard that women are given the option of going, but I cannot confirm that. As for men, though, they don’t have an excuse.

“O ye who believe! When the call is proclaimed to prayer on Friday (the Day of Assembly), hasten earnestly to the Remembrance of Allah, and leave off business (and traffic): That is best for you if ye but knew!” (Quran 62:9)

Thank you drac16. Do they ever have Quran studies like how Christians have Bible studies or how the Jews will study the Hebrew Bible? What other activities do they have at the mosque for the muslims to get together - like speakers or dinners? Do they do charity work for the homeless, retirement homes or hospitals or shelters or do they just donate money?

All of that depends on what mosque you’re talking about. The one I go to has Qur’an tafseer [commentary] program every friday evening and I’ve attended a few times. It’s common for women to organize their own studies as well, which are known as halaqahs. You don’t have to go to a mosque to organize own of those, though. It can be as simple as two girls or two guys studying in a library or at someone’s house. Regardless of a person’s gender, they are beneficial to go to.

I believe that mosques should reach out to their communities so that the youth have something to do. Get them off the streets and gwt them into a basketball program or something. The mosque that I go to is limited in its size, but it occasionally has basketball tournaments, barbecues and guest speakers. During Ramadan, my mosque has a big feast once a week that’s free (I’ve never been to one, though).

The charity stuff, as I said earlier, depends on what mosque you’re talking about. It’s encouraged to visit a sick person because that’s what prophet Muhammad did (regardless of whether the sick person is a muslim or not). The Imam at my mosque wants to build a hospital in Kashmir, so he often asks for money to go towards that. Muslims ought to serve their communities, though. That’s what the early generation of muslims, as well as Muhammad himself, did. Even animals were given rights in Muhammad’s teachings, believe it or not.

Very interesting. Thank you!

You’re welcome. Thank you for the questions.

I’m confused by this, drac16. Your first post seemed to forbid any work at all throughout the entire day of Friday. dronald asked for clarification due to his experiences with Muslims working on Fridays (an observation I’ve made also given the numerous Muslim colleagues I’ve had). Your second post seems to talk about forgoing work in order to attend these Friday prayers. This doesn’t necessarily rule out working on Fridays entirely though. Could you please clarify? Thank you! :slight_smile:

How long is the service? Is there an average time for the sermon? To your knowledge are there any significant differences in how the service goes between say shia and sunni mosques or between other groups of Muslims?

I wasn’t sure how many muslims visit the forum or how often so I was surprised to get an answer so quickly. Thanks again.
:slight_smile:

I read on your public profile you are a muslim convert.
May I ask what made you decide to convert and were you practicing another faith before Islam? Do you read the Quran in English or Arabic? Is the sermon given in English?

Do you have to wash your hands before each prayertime?

I’m imperfect, so I am prone to make mistakes.

What I see in surah 62 verse 9 of the Qur’an is quite clear; don’t work on fridays. As for why you see muslims that work on Fridays, you’d have to ask them about that. Unless I’m missing something, it’s quite clear.

The whole thing takes about 45 minutes. The sermon takes up the majority of the time. Shias have a different way of praying than sunnis do; they pray with their arms at their sides, where we [sunnis] pray with our hands folded at the navel. Shia leaders, in their congregations, will often curse the sahaba and Aisha, one of Muhammad’s wives [may Allah be pleased with her]. The shia leaders who do that are dogs-- they’re not men.

They also place their forehead on a small clay tablet when they go down to prostrate, whereas sunnis place our heads on the ground.

I was an atheist before I converted to Islam. Prior to becoming a muslim, I was never religious. I was baptized as a baby, but that was more or less a tradition that my parents wanted to be carried out on me; they’re not christians. I could go on for hours about why I converted to Islam. In a nutshell, it was the use of reason as well as faith. Many faiths, in my opinion, discourage independant thought, whereas the Qur’an promotes it.

The author of the Qur’an repeatedly challenges its readers/listeners to try to disprove it. That struck a chord with me because I could never understand why, if there is a God, He would want us to not use it. The whole “Just pray about whether this book is true” trick never did much for me. Moreover, prophet Muhammad [peace be upon him] made many prophecies that are fulfilled to a T; things which could never have been predicted [1400 years ago] by sheer chance.

I’m an intellectual person, so my reasons for converting were mostly intellectual in nature. I’ve grown a lot since then, though, and now I know that reason alone is not enough to bring someone to submit to God. It takes humility-- and that humility comes from Allah shattering that person’s ego. It’s not unlike how Prophet Jonah [peace be upon him] cried out to God in the belly of a fish. He cried out as someone totally helpless, out of breath and desperate. That’s what it takes for a conversion to be valid.

On that note I am curious; do you believe that Jonah ever questioned or argued with God?

Thanks for the answer. It certainly would be unprofessional for me to ask my co-workers; but I’ll definitely ask a Muslim the next time it’s in an informal setting.

Okay. Thanks for your replies.

He questioned Him, yes. He was upset by his apparent lack of success in reaching the people of Nineveh, so he left them [when he shouldn’t have]. He was then thrown off a boat and was swallowed by a fish. He repented, though, And God forgave him.

And remember Dhul-nun, when he departed in wrath: He imagined that We had no power over him! But he cried through the depths of darkness, ‘There is no god but thou: glory to thee: I was indeed wrong’. So We listened to him: and delivered him from distress: and thus do We deliver those who have faith.” (surah 21:87-88).

‘Dhul-nun’ just means ‘man of the fish’. It’s a title Allah gave to Jonah [peace be upon him]. There are other passages where he’s called by that name.

This expression :mad: is clear on your statement above.

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