Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah ready for half-a-million worshippers

Time: June 02, 2019  

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More than 5,000 employees worked to achieve the necessary cleanliness of the Prophet’s Mosque and its surroundings. (SPA)
  • The mosque has more than 16,000 carpets, more than 300 tons of Zamzam water daily for more than 16,000 bottles and 40 reservoirs of cold water with clean, single-use cups

MADINAH: The Prophet’s Mosque is ready to receive nearly half-a-million worshippers for the night when the reading of the Qur’an will be finished, the Saudi Press Agency reported a government official as saying.
Reading and completing the Qur’an during the fasting month of Ramadan is considered especially holy as, in Islam, the prayer made once the Qur’an is finished is accepted by Allah.
Hundreds of thousands of Muslims are expected at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah for the important occasion.
The head of public relations at the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques, Jamaan Al-Asiri, said the authority had finalized all preparations for the night.
More than 5,000 employees worked to achieve the necessary cleanliness of the Prophet’s Mosque and its surroundings.
The mosque has more than 16,000 carpets, more than 300 tons of Zamzam water daily for more than 16,000 bottles and 40 reservoirs of cold water with clean, single-use cups. There are 60 drinking sites with more than 385 fountains around the mosque, he added.

FASTFACT

• Saudi Arabia’s Supreme Court called on all Muslims throughout the Kingdom to sight the crescent of the month of Shawwal on Monday evening, Ramadan 29, corresponding to June 3.

• The Supreme Court has urged any person who sees the Shawwal crescent with the naked eye or through telescopes to report it to the nearest court and record his statement.

Mosque employees will be guiding visitors inside the courtyards of the mosque and implementing crowd control measures.
Al-Asiri said the presidency has set up external lighting, domes, umbrellas, and water-spraying fans. It has also put in place escalators and special transport measures to help the elderly and people with disabilities. There will be an increased number of gatekeepers on the ground floor and upper areas of the mosque. The presidency is working with the Red Crescent in case visitors need hospital attention, he said.

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Why Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque matters for Muslims

Time: May 29, 2019  

  • The shrine is Islam’s third holiest after Makkah and Madinah in Saudi Arabia
  • The first mosque built within the Al-Aqsa compound dates back to 638 AD

AMMAN: “There is a spot just in the center of Al-Qibli Mosque where you feel so light when you stand in it.”

This is the way Wasfi Kailani, of the Hashemite Fund for the Restoration of Al-Aqsa Mosque, describes his favorite spot within Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque, the UNESCO World Heritage site also known to Muslims and Palestinians as Al-Haram Al-Sharif.

The spot that Kailani refers to is not far from Saladin’s pulpit, rebuilt by King Abdullah II of Jordan after it was destroyed in a 1969 arson attack.

“I feel that the holiest spot in the entire compound is in the center of the mosque,” he told Arab News. “It is the place from where Prophet Muhammad ascended to the heavens to meet God Almighty with all the prophets with him.”

For Ziad Khalil Abu Zayyad, a spokesman for Fatah, the Palestinian political party, the most special spot is a small room under the Dome of the Rock mosque.

“It is called the Souls Cave,” Abu Zayyad told Arab News. “I like it for the high level of energy and spirituality that can be felt while praying inside it.”

His views are echoed by Ahmad Budeiri, a former BBC staffer, who was born in Jerusalem and has spent all his life there. “I enter the mosque to experience the beauty of its architecture,” he said. “Then I go down to the cave and I get the feeling that all the spiritual meaning in the mosque is condensed in that small space.”

Abla Rweis, a mother of three from Nablus, told Arab News that her favorite spot is the mosque itself. “It has a special holiness to it as it is where the holy prophet Muhammad spent the night on his ascent to heaven.”

Rweis is talking about Al-Isra wa Al-Miraj, the two parts of a Night Journey that Prophet Muhammad took. In Islam, Al-Isra wa Al-Miraj signifies both a physical and spiritual journey.

A little more than a decade on, Caliph Omar was in Jerusalem and he began building the first Al-Aqsa Mosque. Al-Aqsa means “the farthest,” a reference to the distance of Islam’s third holiest shrine from Makkah and Madinah in Saudi Arabia.

For Khalil Attiyeh, a Jordanian parliamentarian, the feeling while going down the stairs from the Dome of the Rock to Al-Aqsa Mosque is special. But for many worshipers and visitors, the entire 144 dunum (144,000sq meters) of the Al-Aqsa compound is sacred.

Political activist Hazem H. Kawasmi said that his favorite
spot is across from the water fountain, where worshipers come for the ritual washing. “I have been coming to Al-Aqsa since I was a child. I love to sit on the stairs across from the mosque and gaze at the water fountain,” he said.

For Arafat Amro, the Islamic Museum located within the compound is special because of its priceless contents. “It is a window to civilizations and history,” said Amro, who is also the musuem’s director.

“Everything here, from parchments, wooden works and metal items to stone carvings, reflects different times. Visitors who came to this mosque down the ages from different locations went back with the history of their Arab and Muslim forefathers etched in their memories.”

The Islamic Museum is located close to both Al-Buraq Wall and a gate through which groups of Jewish extremists often make uninvited incursions with an armed Israeli security escort.

The area was cleared of Palestinians soon after the capture in 1967 of East Jerusalem by Israel, marking the beginning of the occupation.

For Hazem Shunnar, a respected Palestinian economist, Al-Buraq wall is what he often thinks about “because the Israelis took it by force.”

This article was first published in Arab News

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Great Mosque of Mecca

27 May 2019

picture of Shutterstock

Arabic: ٱلْـمَـسْـجِـد ٱلْـحَـرَام‎, romanized: Al-Masjid al-Ḥarām, lit. ‘The Sacred Mosque’

Religion

Affiliation

Islam

Leadership

Imam(s):
Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais
Saud Al-Shuraim
Abdullah Awad Al Juhany
Saleh Al Talib
Saleh Al Humaid
Bandar Baleelah
Usaamah Khayyat
Yaseer Al Dosari
Khalid Al Ghmadi
Maher Al Muaiqly
Faisal Gazzawi

Location

Mecca, Hejaz, Saudi Arabia

Administration

Saudi Arabian government

Geographic coordinates

21°25′19″N 39°49′34″E / 21.422°N 39.826°ECoordinates: 21°25′19″N 39°49′34″E /21.422°N 39.826°E

Architecture

Type

Mosque

Date established

The era of Abraham in Islamic thought

Specifications

Capacity

1.5 million worshippers

Length

400.800 m

Minaret(s)

9

Minaret height

89 m (292 ft)

Site area

356,000 square metres[5]

History 
The Great Mosque contends with the Mosque of the Companions in the Eritrea city of Massawa and Quba Mosque in Medina as the oldest mosque. According to one set of views, Islam as a religion preceded Prophet Muhammad, representing previous prophets such as Abraham. Abraham is credited with having built the Kaaba in Mecca, and consequently its sanctuary, which according to this view is seen as the first mosque[that ever existed. According to another set of views, Islam started during the lifetime of Prophet Muhammad in the 7th century CE, and so did architectural components such as the mosque. In that case, either the Mosque of the Companions or Quba Mosque would be the first mosque that was built in the history of Islam.
History
The Great Mosque is the largest mosque in the world and has undergone major renovations and expansions through the years. It has passed through the control of various caliphs, sultans and kings, and is now under the control of the King of Saudi Arabia who is titled the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.It is located in front of the Abraj Al Bait, the tallest clock tower in the world, the construction of which has been surrounded by controversy concerning the destruction of early Islamic heritage sites by the Saudi government.The Great Mosque of Mecca (Arabic: ٱلْـمَـسْـجِـد ٱلْـحَـرَام‎, romanized: al-Masjid al-Ḥarām, lit. ‘The Sacred Mosque’) is a mosque that surrounds the Kaaba in the city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. It is a site of pilgrimage for the Hajj, which every Muslim must do at least once in their lives if able, the rites of which includes circumambulating the Kaaba within the mosque. It is also the main phase for the ‘Umrah, the lesser pilgrimage that can be undertaken any time of the year. The Great Mosque includes other important significant sites, including the Black Stone, the Zamzam Well, Maqam Ibrahim, and the hills Safa and Marwa. It is open, regardless of date or time.

According to the Quran, Abraham together with his son Ishmael raised the foundations of a house,which has been identified by commentators as the Kaaba. God showed Abraham the exact site, very near to what is now the Well of Zamzam, where Abraham and Ishmael began work on the construction of the Kaaba. After Abraham had built the Kaaba, an angel brought to him the Black Stone, a celestial stone that, according to tradition, had fallen from Heaven on the nearby hill Abu Qubays. The Black Stone is believed to be the only remnant of the original structure made by Abraham.

After placing the Black Stone in the Eastern corner of the Kaaba, Abraham received a revelation, in which God told the aged prophet that he should now go and proclaim the pilgrimage to mankind, so that men may come both from Arabia and from lands far away, on camel and on foot.

Era of Muhammad

Upon Muhammad’s victorious return to Mecca in 630 CE, he and his cousin, Ali Ibn Abi Talib, broke the idols in and around the Kaaba, similar to what, according to the Quran, Abraham did in his homeland. Thus ended polytheistic use of the Kaaba, and re-began monotheistic rule over it and its sanctuary.

Umayyad era

The first major renovation to the mosque took place in 692 on the orders of Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan.Before this renovation, which included the mosque’s outer walls being raised and decoration added to the ceiling, the mosque was a small open area with the Kaaba at the center. By the end of the 8th century, the mosque’s old wooden columns had been replaced with marble columns and the wings of the prayer hall had been extended on both sides along with the addition of a minaret on the orders of Al-Walid I. The spread of Islam in the Middle East and the influx of pilgrims required an almost complete rebuilding of the site which included adding more marble and three more minarets.

Ottoman era

In 1570, Sultan Selim II commissioned the chief architect Mimar Sinan to renovate the mosque. This renovation resulted in the replacement of the flat roof with domes decorated with calligraphy internally, and the placement of new support columns which are acknowledged as the earliest architectural features of the present mosque. These features are the oldest surviving parts of the building.

During heavy rains and flash floods in 1621 and 1629, the walls of the Kaaba and the mosque suffered extensive damage.In 1629, during the reign of Sultan Murad IV, the mosque was renovated. In the renovation of the mosque, a new stone arcade was added, three more minarets (bringing the total to seven) were built, and the marble flooring was retiled. This was the unaltered state of the mosque for nearly three centuries.

Saudi era

First Saudi expansion

One of the entrances of the Grand Mosque, King Abdul Aziz Gate under construction as of January 2018 (right) it has been completed and made functional (Feb, 2019), King Abdul Aziz Gate as it stood after second Saudi expansion (left).

The first major renovation under the Saudi kings was done between 1955 and 1973. In this renovation, four more minarets were added, the ceiling was refurnished, and the floor was replaced with artificial stone and marble. The Mas’a gallery (As-Safa and Al-Marwah) is included in the Mosque, via roofing and enclosures. During this renovation many of the historical features built by the Ottomans, particularly the support columns, were demolished.

On 20 November 1979, the Great Mosque was seized by extremist insurgents who called for the overthrow of the Saudi dynasty. They took hostages and in the ensuing siege hundreds were killed. These events came as a shock to the Islamic world, as violence is strictly forbidden within the mosque.

Second Saudi expansion

The second Saudi renovations under King Fahd added a new wing and an outdoor prayer area to the mosque. The new wing, which is also for prayers, is reached through the King Fahd Gate. This extension was performed between 1982 and 1988.

1988 to 2005 saw the building of more minarets, the erecting of a King’s residence overlooking the mosque and more prayer area in and around the mosque itself. These developments took place simultaneously with those in Arafat, Mina and Muzdalifah. This extension also added 18 more gates, three domes corresponding in position to each gate and the installation of nearly 500 marble columns. Other modern developments added heated floors, air conditioning, escalators and a drainage system.

Third Saudi expansion

In 2008, the Saudi government under King Abdullah Ibn Abdulaziz announced an expansion of the mosque, involving the expropriation of land to the north and northwest of the mosque covering 300,000 square metres (3,200,000 sq ft) . At that time, the mosque covered an area of 356,800 square metres (3,841,000 sq ft) including indoor and outdoor praying spaces. 40 billion riyals (US$10.6 billion) was allocated for the expansion project.

In August 2011, the government under King Salman announced further details of the expansion. It would cover an area of 400,000 m2 (4,300,000 sq ft) and accommodate 1.2 million worshippers, including a multi-level extension on the north side of the complex, new stairways and tunnels, a gate named after King Abdullah, and two minarets, bringing the total number of minarets to eleven. The circumambulation areas (Mataf) around the Kaaba would be expanded and all closed spaces receive air conditioning. After completion, it would raise the mosque’s capacity from 770,000 to over 2.5 million worshippers.King Salman launched five megaprojects as part of the overall King Abdullah Expansion Project in July 2015, covering an area of 456,000 square metres (4,910,000 sq ft). The project was carried out by the Saudi Binladin Group.

On 11 September 2015, at least 111 people died and 394 were injured when a crane collapsed onto the mosque.[45] Construction work was suspended after the incident, and remained on hold due to financial issues during the 2010s oil glut. Development was eventually restarted two years later in September 2017.

In 2016, it was estimated that Great Mosque had cost 100 billion dollars.

List of former Imams and Mu’adhins

Imams

  • Abdullah Al-Khulaifi (Arabic: عَـبْـد ٱلله الْـخُـلَـيْـفِي‎)
  • Ahmad Khatib (Arabic: أَحْـمَـد خَـطِـيْـب‎), Islamic Scholar from Indonesia
  • Ali bin Abdullah Jaber (Arabic: عَـلِى بِـن عَـبْـدُ ٱلله جَـابِـر‎), Maliki Jurist of Mecca
  • Umar Al-Subayyil (Arabic: عُـمَـر الـسُّـبَـيِّـل‎), active member of Khatame-Nabbuwwat Organisation
  • Muhammad Al-Subayyil (Arabic: مُـحَـمَّـد الـسُّـبَـيِّـل‎), died in 2013
  • Abdullah Al-Harazi (Arabic: عَـبْـد ٱلله الْـحَـرَازِي‎), former Chairman of Saudi Majlis al-Shura
  • Ali bin Abdur-Rahman Al-Huthaify (Arabic: عَـلِي بِـن عَـبْـدُ ٱلـرَّحۡـمٰـن الْـحُـذَيْـفِي‎), now Chief Imam of The Prophet’s Mosque, and member of Saudi Arabia’s Al-Hilaal Committee
  • Salah ibn Muhammad Al-Budair (Arabic: صَـلَاح ابْـن مُـحَـمَّـد الْـبُـدَيْـر‎), now Deputy Chief Imam of The Prophet’s Mosque
  • Adil al-Kalbani (Arabic: عَـادِل الْـكَـلْـبَـانِي‎)

Pilgrimage

The Great Mosque is the main setting for the Hajj and Umrah pilgrimages that occur in the month of Dhu al-Hijjah in the Islamic calendar and at any time of the year, respectively. The Hajj pilgrimage is one of the Pillars of Islam, required of all able-bodied Muslims who can afford the trip. In recent times, over 5 million Muslims perform the Hajj every year.

Some of the rituals performed by pilgrims are symbolic of historical incidents. For example, the episode of Hagar’s search for water is emulated by Muslims as they run between the two hills of Safa and Marwah. The Hajj is associated with the life of the Islamic prophet Muhammad from the 7th century, but the ritual of pilgrimage to Mecca is considered by Muslims to stretch back thousands of years to the time of Ibrahim (Abraham).

Structures

  • The Ka‘bah is a cuboid-shaped building in the center of the Great Mosque and one of the most sacred sites in Islam. It is the focal point for Islamic rituals like prayer and pilgrimage.
  • The Black Stone is the eastern cornerstone of the Kaaba and plays a role in the pilgrimage.
  • The Station of Abraham is a rock that reportedly has an imprint of Abraham’s foot and is kept in a crystal dome next to the Kaaba.
  • Safa and Marwah are two hills between which Abraham’s wife Hagar ran, looking for water for her infant son Ishmael, an event which is commemorated in the saʿy ritual of the pilgrimage.
  • The Zamzam Well is the water source which, according to tradition, sprang miraculously after Hagar was unable to find water between Safa and Marwa

Controversies

There has been some controversy that the expansion projects of the mosque and Mecca itself are causing harm to early Islamic heritage. Many ancient buildings, some more than a thousand years old, have been demolished to make room for the expansion. Some examples are:

  • Bayt Al-Mawlīd, the house where Muhammad was born, was demolished and rebuilt as a library.
  • Dār Al-Arqam, the Islamic school where Muhammad first taught, was flattened to lay marble tiles
  • The house of Abu Jahal has been demolished and replaced by public washrooms.
  • A dome that served as a canopy over the Well of Zamzam was demolished.
  • Some Ottoman porticos at the Mosque were demolished, and those remaining are under threat.

This article was first published in Wikipedia

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Medinah mosque’s rich history

Time: May 27, 2019  

1 / 10

Many Islamic historical sites and monuments in the heart of Medinah are popular with visitors during the holy month.
Among the favorites is Al-Qiblatayn Mosque, built by the sons of Sawad bin Ghanem ibn Kaab during the Prophet’s covenant in the second Hijra year.
Since then the mosque has been known as the Al-Qiblatayn Mosque because the Prophet prayed first facing the Al-Aqsa Mosque and then before the Grand Mosque.
Renovations of the mosque were postponed until the Saudi era when King Abdul Aziz bin Abdulrahman Al Saud ordered its renovation, expansion and the construction of a surrounding wall in 1350 AH.
During the reign of King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, the mosque was demolished and rebuilt. The area in which the mosque is located has been redesigned and expanded using the latest technology and engineering designs, with an architectural touch of Islamic character.
(Photo courtesy: SPA)

This article was first published in Arab News

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The Quba Mosque 

22/05/19

Picture of Shutterstock

Religion

Affiliation

Islam

Province

Al Madinah

Region

Hejaz

Location

Madinah, Saudi Arabia

Geographic coordinates

24°26′21″N 39°37′02″E / 24.43917°N 39.61722°ECoordinates: 24°26′21″N39°37′02″E / 24.43917°N 39.61722°E

Architecture

Type

Mosque

Completed

622 (original)
1986 (current)

Specifications

Dome(s)

6

Minaret(s)

4 (current)
1 (original)

The Quba Mosque (Arabic: مَـسْـجِـد قُـبَـاء‎, romanized: Masjid Qubā’) is a mosque in the outlying environs of Medina, Saudi Arabia.Quba mosque was built six kilometer off Medina in village of Quba, which is currently part of Medina. Depending on whether the Mosque of the Companions in the Eritrean city of Massawa is older or not, it may be the first mosque in the world that dates to the lifetime of the Islamic Nabi (Prophet) Muhammad in the 7th century CE.According to legend, its first stones were positioned by Muhammad as soon as he arrived on his emigration from the city of Mecca to Medina,and the mosque was completed by his companions. Muhammad spent 14 days in this mosque praying qaṣr (Arabic: قَـصْـر‎, a short prayer) while waiting for Ali to arrive in Medina, after the latter stayed behindin Mecca to carry out a couple of tasks entrusted to him by the Prophet.

According to Islamic tradition, performing Wuḍū’ (‘Ablution’) in one’s home then offering two Rakaʿāt of Nafl (Optional) prayers in the Quba Mosque is equal to performing one ʿUmrah. Muhammad used to go there, riding or on foot, every Saturday and offer a two rakaʿāt-prayer. He advised others to do the same, saying, “Whoever makes ablutions at home and then goes and prays in the Mosque of Quba, he will have a reward like that of an ‘Umrah.”This ḥadīth was reported by Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Al-Nasa’i, Ibn Majah and Hakim al-Nishaburi.

Architecture

The mosque as it appears from an adjacent road

When Abdel-Wahed El-Wakil was commissioned, in the 20th century, to conceive a larger mosque, he intended to incorporate the old structure into his design. But the old mosque was torn down and replaced with a new one.

The new mosque consists of a rectangular prayer hall raised on a second story platform. The prayer hall connects to a cluster containing residential areas, offices, ablution facilities, shops and a library.

Six additional entrances are dispersed on the northern, eastern and western façades. Four minarets mark the corners of the prayer hall. The minarets rest on square bases, have octagonal shafts which take on a circular shape as they reach the top.

Prayer hall

The prayer hall is arranged around a central courtyard, characterised by six large domes resting on clustered columns. A portico, which is two bays in depth, borders the courtyard on the east and west, while a one-bayed portico borders it on the north, and separates it from the women’s prayer area.

The women’s prayer area, which is surrounded by a screen , is divided into two parts as a passageway connects the northern entrance with the courtyard.

When Quba Mosque was rebuilt in 1986, the Medina architecture was retained – ribbed white domes, and basalt facing and modest exterior – qualities that recalls Madina’s simplicity. The courtyard, is flagged with black, red and white marble. It is screened overhead by day from the scorching heat with shades. Arabesque latticework filters the light of the palm groves outside. Elements of the new building include work by the Egyptian architect Abdel-Wahed El-Wakil and the Stuttgart tensile architect Mahmoud Bodo Rasch, a student of Frei Otto.

Landmarks

  • Waterfountain
  • Masjid Dirar (previously)

Imams and Khateebs of Masjid Quba 1) Sheikh Dr. Salih al Maghamsi 2) Sheikh Dr. Imaad Zuhayr Haafidh 3) Sheikh Dr. Ahmad bin Ali al Hudhaify

Mentions

In hadith

The merits of Masjid Quba are mentioned in nineteen Sahih al-Bukhari hadiths; thirteen Sahih Muslim hadiths; two Sunan Abu Dawood hadiths; six Al-Muwatta hadiths.

Muhammad frequented the mosque and prayed there. This is referred to in a number of hadith:

Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Dinar: Ibn ‘Umar said, “The Prophet used to go to the Mosque of Quba every Saturday (sometimes) walking and (sometimes) riding.” ‘Abdullah (Ibn ‘Umar) used to do the same

Narrated Ibn ‘Umar: The Prophet used to go to the Mosque of Quba (sometimes) walking and sometimes riding. Added Nafi (in another narration), “He then would offer two Rakat (in the Mosque of Quba).”

— Collected by Muhammad al-Bukhari, Sahih al-Bukhari Volume 2, Book 21, Number 285

In the Qur’an

It is believed to be the mosque which the Qur’an mentions as being founded on piety and devoutness (Masjid al-Taqwa):

Never stand (to pray) there (referring to a place of worship in which the hypocrites had used for harm and disbelief, as mentioned in the previous ayah). A place of worship which was founded upon duty (to Allah) from the first day is more worthy that thou should stand (to pray) therein, wherein are men who love to purify themselves. Allah loveth the purifiers.

 

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400 prayer rugs for Makkah’s Grand Mosque cleaned daily during Ramadan

Time: May 22, 2019  

1 / 13
A dedicated laundry facility with 20 trained workers cleans 400 prayer rugs every day during the Ramadan and Hajj seasons.
  • A dedicated laundry facility with 20 trained workers cleans 400 prayer rugs every day during the Ramadan and Hajj seasons

MAKKAH: After nearly two decades of importing prayer rugs for the Grand Mosque in Makkah, Saudi Arabia established dedicated factories at home to manufacture and clean rugs for the largest mosque in the world.
A dedicated laundry facility with 20 trained workers cleans 400 prayer rugs every day during the Ramadan and Hajj seasons, according to Nayef Al-Jahdali, director of the Department of Cleansing and Carpet at the Grand Mosque.
Al-Jahdali said workers use a special machine to remove dust from the rugs, then environmentally friendly shampoo and perfumes are applied before the rugs are rinsed.
They are placed inside industrial driers for two minutes, then dried under the sun for 24 hours before being moved to warehouses. A special department is responsible for repairing damaged rugs.
Belgium, Germany and Lebanon manufactured rugs for the Grand Mosque before the Kingdom opened its own rug-cleaning facilities in 2000.

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Makkah’s Grand Mosque library contains 30,000 books

Time: May 22, 2019

1 / 3
The library contains rare books dating back to the second Hijri century. (SPA)
  • The library was re-inaugurated in 1434 Hijri to boost the religious mission of the Two Holy Mosques, and to guide visitors and pilgrims

MAKKAH: The library of Makkah’s Grand Mosque is considered a beacon of knowledge, covering an area of 1,000 square meters and containing 30,000 books and 5,600 titles.

The library, which has 15 sections, offers digital, audio and internet services. It contains rare books dating back to the Hijri second century, including “Al-Mustatab,” “Majmaa Al-Anhur Fi Sharh Multaqa Al-Abhur” and “Al-Ashbah Wal Nazaer.”

The library was re-inaugurated in 1434 Hijri to boost the religious mission of the Two Holy Mosques, and to guide visitors and pilgrims.

It aims to highlight Islamic culture, develop the skills of researchers and its employees, and procure religious books.

It also aims to establish a scientific center and a world-class cultural and knowledge center, based around a central library of 20 million titles.

The library has enough reading spaces for both men and women, children’s desk services, translation and research centers, high-tech storage, delivery and receipt of folders, special collections and multimedia tools, as well as specialized services of the library with the latest scientific means, a manuscripts and digital library, a department for rehabilitation and restoration of ancient manuscripts and adequate administrative space.

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Three historical mosques in Hail to be restored under Saudi crown prince project

Time: May 21, 2019

Three mosques in the region of Hail have joined the first phase of Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Project for Developing Historical Mosques in the Kingdom as part of 30 historic mosques
  • The first phase of the Hail mosques started with Al-Jarad Mosque, Qafar Mosque and Al-Jal’ud Mosque
  • The project is supervised by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage

RIYADH: Three mosques in the region of Hail have joined the first phase of Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Project for Developing Historical Mosques in the Kingdom, joining 30 historic mosques in 10 regions at a total cost of the first phase of more than SAR50 million ($13.3 million).
The project is supervised by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) represented by “Restoration of Historic Mosques” in partnership with the Ministry of Islamic Affairs.
The first phase of the Hail mosques started with Al-Jarad Mosque, Qafar Mosque and Al-Jal’ud Mosque at a total cost of SAR6,211,000.
Al-Jarad Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in the historic town of Maghaydah and dates back to 1862 and was restored in 1962.
Prayer services continued in the mosque until 1991.
Prominent imams of the mosque include Abdul Aziz Rashid Al-Jamil, Salem Nasser Al-Jamil and Abdullah Hilal Al-Jamil.
Al-Jarad Mosque is built with mud and stone with a wooden roof. It covers 450 square meters and can accommodate 192 worshipers. It consists of the prayer area which is located in the central part of the mosque with an area of 90 square meters.
Al-Khalwah is an underground prayer area located in the southern part of the mosque with an area of 90 square meters. Al-Sarhah is the open area that lies north of the mosque with an area of 212 square meters, in addition to two entrances located in the northern and southern façades.
Qafar Mosque is located in the village of Qafar, which dates back to the first half of the nineteenth century.
The mosque was founded by Ruqayyah Bint Abdullah after the death of her husband. The mosque was renovated in 1965, where Friday prayers were held and people would come from nearby villages to pray in it.
Qafar Mosque is also built with mud and stone with a wooden roof. The total area of the mosque is 638 square meters and can accommodate 500 worshipers. The prayer area is located in the south of the mosque with an area of 175 square meters. Al-Sarha, which is the open courtyard, is located on the north side of the mosque. It is located on the north side of the mosque with an area of 300 square meters and a modern prayer area with an area of 178 square meters.
The mosque has a rectangular 8-meter-minaret as well as two depots southeast of the mosque.
A modern prayer area was built inside Al-Sarha in 1991, where prayer is held at the present time. Prominent imams of the mosque include Rashid Al-Salami, Sulaiman Rashid Al-Salami, Mohammad Iss+a Al-Khurais and Abdullah Nasser Al-Ghaithi. The present imam is Abdulmuhsin Al-Khwair.
Al-Jal’ud Mosque is located in the province of Samira, south-east of Hail. It dates back to the year eighteenth century and is a station on the pilgrimage route.
Al-Jal’ud Mosque is also built with mud and stone with a wooden roof with a total area of 227 square meters and accommodates up to 120 worshipers. The prayer area is in the middle of the mosque and is about 80 square meters. The mosque was rebuilt in 1928.
Ahmed bin Rajaa Al-Shammari, of SCTH, stressed that the directives approved the implementation of the first phase of the project on time and that the implementation should be of the highest quality.

This article was first published in Arab News

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1,300 volunteers helping pilgrims at Prophet’s Mosque

Time: May 11, 2019  

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35 emergency centers have been set up in the region, staffed by more than 45 advanced paramedic teams. (SPA)
  • 35 emergency centers have been set up in the region, staffed by more than 45 advanced paramedic teams

MADINAH: More than 1,300 volunteers are providing assistance around the clock to pilgrims at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah during Ramadan.
Their efforts are part of a volunteering plan designed to provide health and humanitarian services to visitors. It was adopted by the president of the Saudi Red Crescent.
Khalid Al-Sahli, the official spokesman of the Saudi Red Crescent in Madinah, said that the plan includes seven advanced medical posts at the mosque during peak times, and others on the roads leading to it and in Madinah. In addition, 35 emergency centers have been set up in the region, staffed by more than 45 advanced paramedic teams.

This article was first published in Arab News

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