My question is important as it is regarding our daily prayers and needs your immediate attention. We are muslim students studying in a Canadian university, we have a designated place for prayers (unusllay in the afternoon and sometimes in the Mughrib also).
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
Dear Sir, Salaam Aulakaum
My question is important as it is regarding our daily prayers and needs your immediate attention. We are muslim students studying in a Canadian university, we have a designated place for prayers (unusllay in the afternoon and sometimes in the Mughrib also). Can a person who is a know drinker, gambler and often seen with women lead the prayers. To make my question short I would truly appreciate if you specifically made reference to Hanafia school of though, any other reference will be helpful as well.
Thanks for your time and I am sure that Allah will reward you for all the efforts you are making in guiding and educating about Islam.
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Can evil person lead prayer
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 2527 Narrated by Abu Hurayrah
The Prophet (saws) said: Striving (Jihad) in the path of Allah is incumbent on you along with every ruler, whether he is pious or impious; the prayer is obligatory on you behind every believer, pious or impious, even if he commits grave sins; the (funeral) prayer is incumbent upon every Muslim, pious and impious, even if he commits major sins.
Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.663 Narrated by Abu Hurayrah
Allah's Messenger (saws) said, "If the Imam leads the prayer correctly then he and you will receive the rewards; but if he makes a mistake (in the prayer) then you will receive the reward for the prayer and the sin will be his."
Abdullah ibn Mas'ud, the eminent companion of the Prophet (saws) says: "If anyone would like to meet Allah tomorrow as a Muslim, he should persevere in observing these five prayers (in congregation) whenever the call for them is made, for Allah has chosen for your Prophet the way of Right Guidance. And the [five prayers in congregation] are part of this right guidance. If you were to pray them in your houses, as this man who stays behind in his house, you would be leaving a Sunnah of your Prophet (saws). If you leave the Sunnah of your Prophet (saws), you would go astray. Verily, I have seen a time when no one stayed away from them [the congregational prayers] except for the hypocrites who were well known for their hypocrisy. A man would be brought, supported by two people [due to his weakness] until he was placed in a row."
Related by Muslim.
Beloved brother, if the governing body of the masjid or state has appointed an imam to lead the believers in prayer, or if the believers have chosen an imam amongst themselves to lead them in prayer, regardless of who the imam is or whatever sins he might be guilty of, we as believers are commanded to pray behind the chosen or appointed imam. The deeds of the imam have absolutely no relation to the validity of the prayers of the people praying behind him. It would not behove or befit a believer who sincerely believes in Allah and the Last Day to leave prayer in congregation just because of the sins or deeds of the chosen imam.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your brother and well wisher in Islam,