Making up prayers missed for many years
Fatwa No: 95419

  • Fatwa Date:29-4-2007 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 12, 1428
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Question

Assalamu Olaikum. About making up previous years prayer in our subcontinent, we have a prayer called "Umri Qaza". Question : I am in my twenties and am now trying to pray all my namaaz. Can you please tell me if there is a way for me to complete my previous years qaza namaaz? In the following website they replied : http://www.noorulislambolton.com/viewQuestion.asp?topic=Salaah Reply : The reply is "In the name of Allah the most Beneficent and Merciful. Qaza (Missed) Salaah from past years in known as Qaza Umri. To pray each and every one of these is Fardh and an obligation. However, to ensure that a person does not get disheartened the Ulema (Fatawa-a-Radhwiyya) have derived a method for those who cannot pray them all at once. As you only have to pray fardh Rakats and Wajib then after every Salah instead of Nafl and Sunnah Ghair MAukidah pray these. Therefore if you have ten years of Qaza to pray then every day, together with your Ada pray your Qaza for that Salah. E.g. Fajr Qaza before Fajr Ada, Zohr Qaza before (or After) Zohr Ada and miss out the Nafl. Also in the Qaza Umri you may pray Surah FAtiha and a small surah and pray nothing in Ruku and Sujood to speed it up. Insha Allah this way over a period of time your Qaza Umri will be completed. One must also ask for repentance for missing them in the first place. Voluntary prayer will be accepted but will be suspended until the Fardh obligation has been fulfilled. So please do not discontinue to offer voluntary prayers on special nights. Of course Allah knows best Muhammad Salim Ghisa. As I have about 7 years of missed prayers, do you think, that the way to perform missed prayers of previous years has described,is Ok, if not please mention, how will I perform them in regular way as Fazr,Zuhar, Asr, Magrib, Isha & Witr ? I need your urgent reply according to authentic Sunnah way. Allah hafez

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.

 

We have already issued Fataawa 86918, 84403 and 83727 clarifying how to make up many missed prayers, so please refer to them.

As regards the Fatwa which you mentioned in the question which states that a person should make up one day’s missed prayers each day, then we do not think that this Fatwa is correct. The scholars  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them stated that this is not enough unless a person could not do more than this, as Allaah does not burden a soul more than it can bear.

Al-Hattaab  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him from the Maaliki school of jurisprudence, said: "…If a person makes up two days (missed obligatory prayers) each day, he is not considered neglectful…as regards making up one prayer with each obligatory prayer, then -as the common people say- this does not mean anything. However, if a person could not do better, then he should not abandon this, because little is better than nothing."

It depends on one's ability, one should make up missed prayers, and whoever is able to make up two days each day, he should do so, and if one is able to do more, he should do according to his ability.

However, reciting one Tasbeeh (glorifying Allaah Saying: “Subhaana Rabbiyal-‘Atheem” when in the bowing position and: “Subhaana Rabbiyal-A’laa” when in the prostration position) in the bowing position and prostration is an obligation in every prayer as clarified in Fatwa 92193, and one should not claim that it is not an obligation to utter Tasbeeh when making up a missed prayers.

As regards the issue of not performing supererogatory prayers for whoever has missed obligatory prayers, then some scholars  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them stated that the one who has many missed prayers may only perform obligatory prayers and not perform any supererogatory ones because the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) missed four prayers on the day of the battle of Khandaq, so, he  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) ordered Bilaal  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him to call Iqaamah and they prayed Thuhr, Asr, Maghrib and 'Ishaa’ and it was not reported that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) performed a supererogatory prayer between these prayers. Therefore, it is more appropriate to perform obligatory prayers than performing supererogatory prayers, unless the missed prayers are very few, in which case, one may perform supererogatory prayers as well.

Some other scholars  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them stated that one should not abandon the supererogatory prayers especially the Witr and the two Rak'ahs before the Fajr obligatory prayer.   

Allaah Knows best.

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