RNA – Hujjat al-Islam Mohammad-Ali Nekounam issued his weekly statement via the internet in place of the cancelled Friday prayer sermon to the people of Shahrekord.
Friday prayers have been cancelled in Shahrekord and many other cities throughout Iran due to the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) with the aim of preventing the spread of the Coronavirus and maintaining the health of the people.
Referring to the arrival of the holy month of Ramadan, he said, “In Khutbah al-Sha’baniyyah [the sermon given by the Prophet Muhammad on the last Friday of Sha’ban], the Noble Prophet offered fifteen important lessons on the three axes of blessing, mercy and forgiveness for all believers. If we place these three axes as the basis of our actions during each period of ten days of this holy month, then we will definitely achieve the success of our worthy guests.”
Hujjat al-Islam Nekounam said that in previous years, we invited people to participate in religious gatherings during the holy month of Ramadan, such as Friday prayers, congregational prayers and International al-Quds Day marches and said, “This year, given the prevailing conditions in the country and the outbreak of the Coronavirus, our duty is to maintain ‘social distancing’ to help the medical staff and the health of the people.”
His Eminence emphasized that observing “social distancing” doesn’t mean cancelling religious rituals and said, “Believers can attend and worship in mosques by observing health protocols. Also, congregational imams (prayer leaders) can be present in the mosques to answer the religious questions of believers and mosques can be active by observing all aspects of the health guidelines.”
Emphasizing that people should not expect congregational prayers to be held in mosques in the current situation, he added, “We must respect the rules of the Coronavirus headquarters and offer the prayers individually.”
Hujjat al-Islam Nekounam noted that mosques must be the centres of cultural, social, financial, moral and emotional services for the people in this situation and said, “Mosques have huge potentials for social and cultural activities. Hot food can be cooked in mosques and distributed among locals with the priority of the poor. Also, if they are able, the people can share some of their iftar meals with their neighbours when it’s not possible to break their fast in the same manner as before.”
In other remarks, he said, “Today, we see how this epidemic has shown the world the weakness of the arrogant powers that once claimed their security has been provided with all kinds of military weapons and scientific power and how they are incapable of confronting this virus.”
Referring to the launch of the space defence satellite, Nour-1, by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, he said, “This astonished everyone. The satellite was launched into orbit in a situation where the Islamic Republic was under sanctions, but thanks to God, this multi-purpose defence satellite was successfully launched into space.”
Rasa News Agency