Pronouncing the intention to observe Sawm

Question: We used to intend Sawm (Fast) of the next day directly after Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer: The Imam (the one who leads congregational Prayer) says: “I intend to observe Sawm tomorrow as a fulfillment for the obligation of observing Sawm in this year for the sake of Allaah (Exalted be He) and out of Ihtisaab (confident anticipation of Allaah’s Recompense) for His sake.” Then, the Ma’mooms (people being led by an Imam in Prayer) repeat the words after the Imaam.

Answer: Having the intention to observe Sawm during the night before dawn each day is Waajib (obligatory) according to Sharee`ah. Hafsah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said that the Prophet (peace be upon him) stated: He who does not determine to fast before dawn does not fast. (Related by Ahl-ul-Sunan [authors of Hadeeth compilations classified by jurisprudential themes]) The heart is the place to determine intention..read more here.

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