Ruling on renting churches for salaat

Dear Brothers & Sisters,
As-Salaamu-Alaikum 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:
What is the ruling on renting churches as places to hold the five daily prayers or Jumu’ah and Eid prayers, given that there are statues and all the other things that churches usually contain, but knowing that churches are usually the cheapest places that can be rented from Christians and that some universities and charitable organizations may even offer them for use on these occasions without charge?
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Praise be to Allaah.

The Muslims should strive as much as they can to build their own places of worship, which should be built according to Islamic sharee’ah, structurally sound, without extravagance or decoration. If the Muslims cannot build their own mosques and they need a place to pray, and they cannot find anywhere other than a church, then “hiring churches to pray in them is not forbidden in sharee’ah if it is necessary, but praying towards statues and pictures should be avoided, and they should be covered or concealed if they are in the direction of the qiblah.”

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah's Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

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