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Eid Mubarak Taqabbal Allahu minna wa minkum i undrestood that if Eid falls on the day of jumuah it jumuah becomes voluntary ..except for the Imam. At one masjid we were told we still HAD to attend. I offered to show the maulana the hadith. He declined... no one can make this salah voluntary

Answered by Shaykh Abdurrahmann Murad

Assalamu Alaikum,

Dear brother, Eid Mubarak and Jazaak Allah khairan for seeking the proper guidance in this matter.

Performing Salaatul Jumu'ah is indeed an obligatory act for Muslim men, as Allah, may He be exalted, says in the Qur'an (interpretation of the meaning):

“O you who believe (Muslims)! When the call is proclaimed for the Salaah (prayer) on the day of Friday (Jumu'ah prayer), come to the remembrance of Allah (Jumu'ah Khutbah, or sermon, and Salaah) and leave off business (and every other thing); that is better for you if you did but know!” (Surah al-Jumu'ah 63:9).

In relation to the issue of praying Salatul Jumu'ah on Eid, it is quite straightforward, Alhamdulillah. The Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, made an exception when Eid fell on the day of Al-Jumu'ah during his time. He said:

"Two Eids are present on this day; Whoever wishes to perform the Eid prayer, it would suffice (for him) and one would not have to perform the Jumu'ah. As for us, we will perform both." (Authentic- Abu Dawood, Ibn Majah and various other sources)

So, the Hadith makes it very clear that if Eid falls on the day of Jumu'ah, and one attends and performs the Eid prayer, then praying Salatul Jumu'ah is optional and voluntary.

The Imam you spoke to is most likely from a Hanafi background; in the Hanafi Madh'hab, the Eid prayer is viewed as a Sunnah, but the Jumu'ah is considered Wajib (compulsory), which must be performed regardless of the circumstances. Some Hanafi scholars also consider some narrations of the above hadeeth to be weak.

If one were to view the above narration, however, and compare it to many other ahadeeth with similar wordings - all of which are authentic - it is quite clear...if Eid falls on the day of Jumu'ah, and one attends and performs the Eid prayer, then praying Salatul Jumu'ah becomes optional and voluntary on that day.  This exception is not granted if Eid falls on Thursday or Saturday; only if on a Friday.

May Allah make us among those who are successful. Ameen