Ruling of Posting An Advertisement at Mosque
What is the ruling of advertising the umrah (minor pilgrimage) at mosque? I see some traveling company for pilgrimage and minor pilgrimage that post their ad at the mosque.
In the name of Allah. Peace and prayer of Allah be upon him.
In website Fatawa Syabakah Islamiyah, a web that is supervised by Dr. Abdullah al Faqih, it is explained about the detail of ruling of announcement at the mosque.
فتعليق الإعلانات في المساجد على أقسام:
الأول: أن يكون الإعلان من باب الدلالة على الخير كالإعلان عن فتح روضة إسلامية للأطفال فلا ينبغي أن يشك في جوازه، لأن كونه دلالة على الخير يدخل فيما بنيت له المساجد.
There are some types of Posting announcement at mosque:
First: Announcement contains information and enjoinment to do good. For example: Information about construction of islamic educational playground for kids. No doubt that such ad is alright. Because it contains decent information, and this is among the goals the mosque constructed to.
الثاني: أن يكون الإعلان عن أمر مباح كالإعلان عن تأجيل حفل عرس ونحو ذلك مما يحصل نادراً وتتحقق به مصلحة عامة للناس، فلا حرج فيه والأولى عدم فعله إذا أمكن تحقيق الغرض بغير ذلك.
Second, announcement that contains allowable information, for example, announcement of postponement of wedding reception, or the like, which is rarely done, and it becomes public interest. Such announcement is permitted, however, it is better to avoid it, if it can be announced anywhere else.
وأما الإعلان على سبيل الترويج التجاري، فهذا مما ينبغي أن تنزه عنه المساجد لما في ذلك من إشغال الناس بالصفقات التجارية، وكثرة مثل هذا النوع من الإعلانات وإقبال أصحاب السلع عليه، وقد ورد النهي عن البيع والشراء في المسجد، وهذا وإن كان في دخوله في معنى البيع المنهي عنه نظر، إذ هو ليس بيعاً شرعاً، إلا أنه ينبغي اجتنابه، لأن المساجد لم تبن لهذا.
As for commercial announcement, it is supposed to be distanced from the mosque, because it will occupy the worshipper with commercial activities and will trigger more merchant to promote their goods at the mosque, whereas there is strict prohibition to trade in the mosque. Although advertising activity at mosque is not included in that prohibition, since it is not among the meaning of trading according to shari’a, but it is supposed to be distanced from mosque, since mosque isn’t built for this goal.
[Fatwa of Syabakah Islamiyah, no. 53178]
In this kind of advertisement, there are two different elements:
First: Persuasion to perform umrah or minor pilgrimage. Of course we agree that this is persuasion to do good, just as announcement to follow a religious lecture or other religious activities. From the three kinds of announcement that we’ve mentioned earlier, this kind of persuasion is included in the first one, which means that it is alright to put at the mosque.
Second: An advertisement to perform the minor pilgrimage with certain travel agent. This is more into selling the service, in other words, it is purely commercial. It is no different with other product or merchandise. And according to the previous fatwa, this kind of ad falls into the third category, which should be distanced from mosques.
If we examine it closely, many of the ads of umrah that were posted on mosques’ announcement board are closer to advertising the travel agent rather than a mere persuasion to perform the umrah itself. Among indicators that bring us to this conclusion are:
Firstly, most of the time, the ads mention about the excellences of the travel agent, who are the leader of umrah, what are the facilities, and so on. Contrary to it, indications that explain about the virtues and benefits of umrah are not mentioned. Even if it is there, it only contains very little information which draws very little of people attention.
Secondly, usually, such ad will explain about the amount of down-payment that must be paid by the pilgrim. By this point, we could easily judge it as service selling.
Thirdly, it will provoke other travel agents to post their ad too. Sometimes we find two or more ads in one announcement board at a mosque. If it is merely aimed to persuade people to perform umrah, one ad from one travel surely is enough, because their aim is similar; to persuade people to perform umrah.
By these considerations, the ad of umrah travel shouldn’t be posted on mosque, or distributed During the Friday prayer. Allowing such ad to be circulated at mosques is a form of negligence to the real function of the mosque.
And Allah knows best.
Answered by: Ustadz Ammi Nur Baits