Pilgrimage: On behalf of those enjoying good health

Q436 :What does Islam say about those who perform Umrah on behalf of their relatives who are enjoying good health in their own country? Is it permissible?

A436 : Doing the substitute pilgrimage or Umrah is allowed in order to give a chance to those who are unable to offer it themselves, because of circumstance beyond their control, to have this duty fulfilled. If you look at those who put the question to the Prophet in order to know whether doing the pilgrimage on behalf of their relatives was permissible or not, you will find that they put to him the circumstances which did not enable that person to fulfill his duty himself. A woman told the Prophet that her father could not sit up on the back of a camel, because of old age. The Prophet told her that she could do the pilgrimage on his behalf. Another person asked about his father who had died, implying that the father meant always to offer the pilgrimage. Again the Prophet told him to pay the debt owed by his father to Allah, i.e. pilgrimage. It is needless to say that a person who has the physical and financial ability to offer the pilgrimage or the Umrah is required to fulfill those duties himself. If he is financially unable to do his duty, then that duty is not required of him. If he is chronically ill but is well off, he is required to send someone on his behalf. What people these days do when they find a relative of theirs working in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is to ask that relative to do the Umrah or Pilgrimage on their behalf. He willingly obliges and they feel that they got this duty done for them on the cheap. This is not the way to deal with Allah. A substitute pilgrimage or Umrah is acceptable and meaningful when there is a compelling reason for it. If the reason is merely convenience, then that is not the way to approach our Islamic duties.

Our Dialogue ( Source : Arab News - Jeddah )