Building separate mosques for women
Fatwa No: 166207

Question

As salam wa alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barkathu. As per the Aya of Sura Ahzab (33:33) is it advisable for dai to call women to come to masajid for prayer & listening islamic lectures of scholars? Is it ok to built a seperate masajid for women? Does it have any authentic proof? also we shall like to get scholarly comment on ladies getting togeter during ramadan for iftar from Asr till Taraweeh prayer in designated halls for ladies ( leaving their families & houses for such a length of time on daily basis) Thanks, May Allah guide us all & bless all of us especillay your team .

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

There is no doubt that in principle a woman should stay in her home as per the verse mentioned in the question so that she would not cause temptation to men nor be tempted by them by her going out.

Nonetheless, it is permissible for a woman to go out for her need as per the authentic Hadeeth in which the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Indeed, Allaah has given you (O women) permission to go out for your needs.

Moreover, seeking knowledge is one of the most virtuous acts about which there are many Sharee’ah texts (i.e. from the Quran and the Sunnah). This virtue is not exclusive to men; rather, it is for all, for men and women. Therefore, it is permissible for a Daa’iyah (caller to Islam) to call women and urge them to attend circles of knowledge. For more information, please refer to Fataawa 85903 and 84067.

However, it is not permissible for a woman to go out without fulfilling the Islamic requirements, like seeking the permission of her husband, wearing Hijab and so forth. For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 82359 and 82401.

As regards the prayer, it is better for a woman to pray at her home as the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “…And their (women’s) homes are better for them.” [Al-Bukhari]

Therefore, it is not preferable for a Daa’iyah to call women to the mosque only for the prayer. For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 136492 and 92531.

Besides, it is not from the guidance of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) nor the Companions among whom are the four Caliphs, to set a special mosque for women to pray in it separately from men.

As regards women gathering in a place limited to them, during Ramadan or at any other time, for this period [that you mentioned in the question] or any other period, for a valid purpose, like for Iftaar (breaking the fast) and the like, then it is permissible for them to do so as long as this does not lead to committing a prohibition or neglecting an obligation. Indeed, such gatherings may lead to many advantages and benefits, like amity and love between them and the like. For more benefit, please refer to Fatwa 153615.

Allaah Knows best.

Related Fatwa