Sultan Ahmet Mosque, Fatih, Turkey
Caption: Sultan Ahmet Mosque, Istanbul, Turkey

Congregational Prayers in the absence of a Mosque

Posted by Umair Abbasi on April 16, 2018 in Technology


The Friday Prayers Dilemma

I am currently living in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico since Feb 2018. It's quickly approaching to be two months since I have been living here. It could have been a shorter stay by a month when I realized there were no mosques in Playa Del Carmen during my first week of stay here.

You see, Friday congregational prayers are essentially... well, essential to me! I need my Friday congregational prayers. It's important to me. It makes me who I am. It is what feeds my spirit to be humbler than I was before I entered the mosque.

I won't get into the essentials of why the Friday prayer is significant to a Muslim. There are alot of articles out there on the topic. Here is a good comprehensive example of one.

For me, the words in the Quran are enough.

62.9. O you who believe! When the call is recited for prayer on Friday (the day of assembly), hurry sincerely to the Remembrance of Allah, and leave behind the business (and traffic): That is best for you if you only knew!

But what if you are in a place (like Playa Del Carmen) where there is no mosque or a place to congregate for Friday prayers?

Build an app

I have been learning some iOS programming. By some I mean I know how to define variables and constants in iOS. Okay, maybe not just that, but in simpler words I am not there yet!

But, lets get back to the congregation issue. You see, the congregational prayers don't have to be in a mosque. I hope I am not speaking out of negligence here. It's a congregation, a whole bunch of folks (there is probably a minimum), under one roof, listen to a short enlightening sermon by the Imam (imagine Priest) and performing their prayers of two rakats in congregation.

SO! What if I could (it doesn't have to be me) build an app (though it would be nice if I could do it too. Collect all the blessings you know)!

Here is what we know that would define what the app should do or have.

App Specs

Location

We need to be able to share a location that is feasible for folks to congregate for a Friday prayer. Like my two bedroom apartment here in Playa Del Carmen.

Time

The time the sermon is going to start.

Imam (think Priest)

Someone who is willing to be the Imam for the prayer.

Attendance

Folks in the area who will be attending. This has to be geographically bound to folks that are close to the location of the congregation. So it's not someone in Istanbul saying yes I will be attending the prayers in Playa Del Carmen. Also it has to be some identifiable actual people. Don't won't fakers marking attending. Maybe a log-in via Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Apple ID, others? Also the number of folks that can attend (capacity of the space).

Accessibility

Is it accessible for folks? Does it have an elevator? Is their a security guard at the gate you would need to address? Is there parking space? Is there a separate private space for women to enter and pray?

Status

The status is basically whether this congregational prayer is going to take place. Once the app has the bare minimum of folks attending the status is a yes this is going to happen.

Why not build a Mosque?

Truly wouldn't that be a beautiful thing where we (not just Muslims) all had places of worship in every corner of the Earth. But until that time, I think there is some value to this idea, don't you?


app

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