Mosques: When a person goes into a mosque

Q395 :When a person goes into a mosque after hearing the call to prayer, should he pray first the sunnah or the two raka'hs recommended as greeting to the mosque?


A395 : When you enter the mosque to offer an obligatory prayer, whether shortly after the call is made or at any time, and whether the congregation has finished, the sunnah known as greeting to the mosque is recommended. If, however, you are offering a prayer which is normally preceded by two rak'ahs as sunnah, or recommended, then you offer these, combining with them the greeting to the mosque. In other words, you pray two rak'ahs only intending them to be the regular sunnah of the obligatory prayer as well as the greeting to the mosque. If you enter shortly after the call for prayer is made, you also combine with them the sunnah of athan, or prayer call. That gives you the reward of six rak'ahs when you offer only two. If you enter the mosque intending to stay for some time, [Added: that is if you enter well before the next prayer timing] having offered the last obligatory prayer, you are recommended to offer two rak'ahs in greeting to the mosque. You cannot combine these with any sunnah, because there is no sunnah to offer, since you have already finished your last obligatory prayer. It was the habit of the Prophet (peace be on him) when he entered the mosque not to sit down until he has offered two rak'ahs.


Our Dialogue ( Source : Arab News - Jeddah )