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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:
Qn: If i enter the Mosque just after the imam finishes the salah, should i have wait for another person to pray in congregation? If yes, then how long should i have to wait?
If i start to pray individually,while i am praying third Raqa' in my Zhuhr Salah, what sould i do if i supposed to hear that a congregation is going in the mosque? Should i stop my prayer and join with them or should i continue my prayer?
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Your Question: .If i enter the Mosque just after the imam finishes the salah, should i have wait for another person to pray in congregation? If yes, then how long should i have to wait?
Ibn 'Umar reports that the Prophet (saws) said: "Prayer in congregation is superior to a prayer performed individually by twenty-seven degrees."
Related by al-Bukhari and Muslim.
It would obviously be preferred and best that the believers offer their obligatory prayers in congregation in the masjids; and if that is not possible for a valid reason, then the next best thing is to offer it in congregation with the brothers wherever one is; and if even that is not possible, the absolute last legal option is to offer it alone.
If one perchance enters the masjid only or just after the imam has finished the congregational prayer, it would only be prudent for the believer to wait for a few minutes in the hope that some other brother who might have missed his prayer in congregation enters the masjid.and the two of them can then form a congregation and avail of the superior rewards of offering their prayer in congregation.
Your Question: If i start to pray individually,while i am praying third Raqa' in my Zhuhr Salah, what sould i do if i supposed to hear that a congregation is going in the mosque? Should i stop my prayer and join with them or should i continue my prayer?
Wabsah relates that the Messenger of Allah (saws) saw a man praying behind the rows by himself and the Prophet (saws) ordered him to repeat his salah.
Related by Bukhari and Muslim.
If you are offering your prayers individually, regardless of whether they are Nafl, Sunnah or Fard, and you reckon during your individual prayer that a congregation is about to start or has started..then you should immediately break and leave your unfinished individual prayer and join the congregation with the believers. In light of the above quoted guidance of the Messenger of Allah (saws), a prayer offered by a person alone when a prayer congregation is in process is unacceptable to Allah Subahnah.
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,