Question 199: We live in a small village whose people adhere to the Sunnah from a long time ago. This is from the virtue of Allaah, and then the efforts of our ancestors (may Allaah be merciful with them). I accompanied some of them, and Allaah made them a reason for my guidance. I tried my best, praise be to Allaah, to spread the Sunnah in the country, and work for Da`wah (call to Allaah) to the utmost of my ability. I lead people in Salaah (prayer) since 1977, and after the incidents that have happened in Egypt recently, the ministry of Waqfs (Endowments) sent a Khateeb (preacher) to the Masjid (mosque) of our village. At the beginning, this Khateeb convinced us that he would pursue the same Manhaj (methodology) we adopt, and after he became firmly established in the Masjid, he began propagating the idea of putting a radio in the Masjid for people to listen to the recitation of the Qur’aan before the Jumu`ah (Friday) Prayer, as is done in other Masjids in Egypt. Of course, there were many ignorant followers who agreed with him, and they put a radio connected to a loudspeakers before Salaah. I personally tried to prevent him from this act.
I even exposed him to the evidences stating the impermissibility of reciting the Qur’aan loudly where people offer their Salaah, and that such a deed is nothing but reviving a Bidd`ah (innovation in religion) and nullifying an act of Sunnah. He responded by arguing that if this was prohibited, then why is it widespread in all Masjids of Egypt? The matter has gone so far that they placed the body of a dead person in the bier right in front of the people before Jumu`ah Prayer, and after finishing it, we offered Funeral Prayer for him. I tried to prevent him from doing this before Jumu`ah (Friday) Prayer due to the impermissibility of such a deed, but he refused and said that this is the opinion of Imaam Maalik who sees that it as a lesson for the living. I told him that Imaam Maalik regarded offering Funeral prayer in all Masjids as Makrooh (disliked). However, he remained deaf to my opinion, and was apparently convinced of his own. The path for newly invented Bidd`ahs has been paved by the coming of this Khateeb, and there will be more of such Bid`ahs. I am really perplexed and do not know what to do, especially that there are those who want to adhere to the Sunnah, and shun the way to Bid`ah. It should be taken into consideration that this is the only Masjid in the village, and I am thinking of deserting this Masjid, and offering Salaah in one of the Sunni Masjids in Alexandria. However, if I do that, more kinds of Bidd`ahs will find their way, and those willing to adhere to the Sunnah will be without help, not to mention their inability to offer Salah in other Sunni Masjids due to their scarcity in the rural areas and the countryside.
Answer: Firstly, It is not permissible to put a radio or the like to listen to the recitation of the Qur’aan loudly in the Masjid on Friday before the Imaam ascends the pulpit.
Secondly, It is permissible to offer the Funeral Prayer in a Masjid according to the most preponderant opinion of scholars which is supported by the sound evidences. However, the body of the dead person should not be placed in front of the people until the obligatory prayer is finished, then the bier is to be put between them and the Qiblah (Ka`bah-direction faced in Prayer) to offer the Funeral Prayer... read more here.