Buying a “Sacrifice” via Various Charitable Organisations to be Slaughtered Abroad for the Poor?
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
It is a common practice for Charity Organisations to advertise and offer “sacrifices” to be done abroad and distributed to the poor in exchange for a fee to cover the costs of the slaughtering. Many individuals who desire to sacrifice engage in this activity and perhaps find a greater degree of ease in simply buying a “sacrifice” from a Charity who will slaughter on their behalf abroad for the poor.
The following is the fatwa of Shaikh al-Fawzan on this issue:
Q: “A fatwa has spread from you in recent times that paying money to Charity Organisations for the slaughtering [to be done on your behalf] is against the Sunnah? What’s your opinion on this oh Shaikh?”
A: “Yes I say this now, The legislated sacrifice is done in the household [i.e. by the by person himself in his country], the household of the one slaughtering, amongst his children, and amongst his neighbours, the one slaughtering eats from it, him and his children, and they give it in charity [distribute it] and give it as a gift…so they are to be slaughtered in the houses, in the houses of the muslims [i.e. done yourselves and not abroad] so that the household obtains its benefits, apparent and concealed.
However if it slaughtered in some other place [abroad] then these distinctions that the slaughtering was prescribed for are lost; as for an individual who wishes to give it in charity [i.e. those who may claim that the poor will benefit from the sacrifice abroad more than us, which may be true] then give in charity generally [i.e. send money abroad to them in any case any time] – as for the specific acts of worship then they are to remain as they have been prescribed. Indeed the prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم would sacrifice in his household, and the companions would sacrifice in their households and they never sent money outside or abroad for animals to be bought and slaughtered there, since that causes the benefits of slaughtering to be forfitted, so indeed it is a rite of Islam [prescribed in a particular way to be done].
This should clarify the affair; for indeed many are always confused as to why it is better to do it yourselves in your locations rather than send to the poor abroad, the Shaikh clarifies it is an Islamic Rite prescribed to be done yourselves and not abroad, as for the poor abroad then no-one has prevented you from aiding them and being charitable since you are free to send whatever amount of money and food as you wish abroad at whatever time – ‘Eid or otherwise -, however the rite of islam in terms of the slaughtering is not to be specified, that is to be done yourselves and distributed within family and neighbours etc.