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Virtual Jumu`ah: Follow-up Question

The answer to that is that according to the preferred ruling of many scholars, it is not essential for the khateeb to lead the jumu`ah.

 In other words, if one person delivers the Khutbah, another person can lead the prayer. We have done so on a few occasions at our mosque, the IIT, as well as at the Islamic Foundation and Jami Mosque in the past.

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Consequently, according to the sound ruling of many scholars, it is fine for someone else to lead the prayer after the Khutbah.

Based on these two points, it is fine for those who listen to the online Khutbah/ Friday talk during jumu`ah time to perform the two rak`ahs of jumu`ah at home as long as they have the correct number of people and one is willing to lead. In this case, there is no compelling evidence to state that they must pray dhuhr after listening to the Friday Khutbah.

Talk Is Not Khutbah?

In terms of the objection raised that a talk that is live streamed is not a Khutbah. This is purely a play with words. A talk delivered at the mosque and live streamed can be a Khutbah as long as it fulfills the condition of dhikr.

According to Imam Abu Hanifah, the essential pre-requisite of a valid Khutbah is praising and glorifying Allah.

Shafi‘ites and Hanbalists add to this list (besides hamd) the following: Salah (sending benedictions) on the Prophet (peace be upon him), referencing a Qur’anic verse or more, and advising the people to be conscious of Allah. Others add to the above, that it should conclude with a general supplication or du‘a.

Therefore, as long as the talk contains these essentials, there is no reason to insist that a talk that is live streamed at the time of jumu`ah is not a Khutbah. The word Khutbah in Arabic means talk, speech or discourse. Furthermore, the Prophet (peace be upon him) never meant the Khutbah to be a ritual recitation, but an occasion to deliver a message or educate the congregation. That is why various companions referred to the Prophet’s Khutbah as the greatest teaching moments of their lives.

Conclusion

In conclusion, there is no basis to insist that those who listen to a talk that is live streamed at jumu`ah time ought to pray dhuhr on jumu`ah day if they have enough people to pray the two rak`ahs of salatul jumu`ah after listening to the talk.

Please remember though that this ruling is only for this exceptional circumstance that we find ourselves in because of the COVID lockdown. Once the lockdown is lifted we ought to gather in our congregational mosque for performing regular jumu`ah salah

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About Sheikh Ahmad Kutty
Sheikh Ahmad Kutty is a Senior Lecturer and an Islamic Scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada