Muslims pray for rain to put out California fires

By staff writers
24 Oct 2007

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) yesterday called on mosques and other houses of worship across the US to offer prayers for rain to help put out wildfires currently raging in California.

CAIR urged American mosques to offer special Islamic prayers, called Salatul Istisqa (sal-AT-al-istis-KA), which the Prophet Muhammad traditionally offered during times of drought.

In Salatul Istisqa, the Prophet would offer supplications such as: "O God, give us rain that will replenish us, abundant, fertilizing and profitable, not injurious. Grant it now without delay...Send down rain upon us and make it a source of strength and satisfaction...O God, give us a saving rain, good and productive, general and heavy, now and not later, beneficial and not harmful."

They also quoted the Quran which states: "O my people! Seek forgiveness of your Lord and turn to Him in repentance. He will send you from the sky abundant rain." (Quran, 11:52)

"Americans of all faiths need to offer spiritual assistance to the courageous firefighters who are battling these deadly fires," said CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad.

Awad also asked mosques in wildfire areas to offer shelter to fire victims and that financial aid for victims be sent to the American Red Cross.

CAIR, America's largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 33 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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