إِنَّا لِلّهِ وَإِنَّـا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعونَ
“Verily, unto God do we belong and verily, unto Him we shall return.”
كُلُّ نَفْسٍ ذَآئِقَةُ الْمَوْتِ
“Every soul shall have a taste of death”
Everything in the heavens and the earth belongs to Allah (swt). Our lives, our possessions and our families are Allah’s gifts to us. These are trusts of Allah (swt) given to us in this world. Allah with His mercy allows us to benefit from these trusts for a pre-determined period of time. Allah (swt) with His wisdom takes away these trusts as He sees appropriate. Allah (swt) knows and we know not.
Death is the surest event that occurs in every human’s life. Death is inevitable and unpredictable. Nobody knows when death will come to him or her.
While Muslims in America are growing in numbers, through births, conversion and immigration; inevitably some of them are breathing their last.
The Muslim Community Center (MCC) foresaw the need of a cemetery to bury their dead according to Islamic rulings. MCC acquired a piece of land from Rosehill Cemetery conveniently located on the north side of Chicago in 1989. Additional land was acquired in Bohemian National Cemetery, also at a very short distance from the MCC building on Elston Avenue in Chicago.
In the Muslim Cemetery all graves are properly laid in the direction with respect to the holy Kabah.
MCC provides assistance in all funeral services. Here we provide you guidance and information for peacefully completing the burial of your deceased loved one.
- From the Death Bed to the Grave
- Immediately After Death
- Whom to contact
- Transporting the Body
- Preparing the Body for Burial
- Salat al-Janaza (Funeral Prayer)
- Funeral Facility
FROM THE DEATH BED TO THE GRAVE:
Several services are needed to take the body from the deathbed to the grave:
- Services of a Funeral Director consist of getting the body released, wherever the body may be and transporting it from the place of death to Funeral Facility while abiding by the regulations and preparing the body for burial.
- The funeral Prep-room, is where the body is washed, shrouded and placed in a coffin for burial after Salat-al-Janaza (Funeral Prayer).
- MCC has a Funeral Prep-room within the premises of our building at 4380 N. Elston Avenue in Chicago.
- The Rosehill and Bohemian cemeteries, is the location for Muslim burials, grave opening closing services, and a concrete liner are provided, and the deceased is laid to rest. MCC has pre-purchased graves and concrete liners for the Muslim Burial.
- MCC has gravestones available for the burials at Rosehill Cemetery for Bohemian you would have to directly go to the Cemetery.
IMMEDIATELY AFTER DEATH:
Soon after the death the body becomes cold and loses its flexibility. Therefore, you need to take a few steps to position the body correctly for burial.
- Turn the face towards the right.
- Place hands (laid out straight) on the sides.
- Close the mouth. If necessary, tie a piece of cloth around the chin and head to keep the mouth closed.
- Keep the feet together. If necessary, tie the two big toes together with a string.
- Remind the doctor to sign the death certificate.
- It is highly recommended that the burial take place as soon as possible after the death.
*WHOM TO CONTACT IN CASE OF EMERGENCY*
1. THE POLICE: 911
2. FUNERAL DIRECTOR:
MCC has been working with and recommends Mufti Haroon Firdausi, Licensed Funeral Director of Muslim Funeral Services. Phone: 815-549-9400, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
3. MCC CEMETERY COMMITTEE:
MCC has pre-purchased designated sections of graves and concrete liners from Rosehill Cemetery and Bohemian National Cemetery.
M. Saif Mazhar – Phone: 773-816-8845(c) or Sabih Uddin- 773-217-9356(c)
Rashed Ali Khan, Co-Chair – Phone: 773-386-8181 (c)
3. BOHEMIAN NATIONAL CEMETERY:
After getting the grave number from MCC Cemetery Committee, you need to visit the designated Cemetery to make a payment for opening and closing services, and also sign all necessary papers by a family member of the deceased and to schedule the burial.
THERE IS NO LONGER ANY GRAVES AVAILABLE AT ROSEHILL CEMETERY. CONTACT CEMETERY FOR OTHER INFORMATION. PHONE (773) 561-5940
Bohemian National Cemetery – (773) 539-8442 Cemetery office is located at 5255 N Pulaski Road, Chicago Illinois 60630
Burial arrangements are available on Monday thru Friday until 3:00 pm. Saturday and Sunday are subject to availability of the crew, with some extra charges.
TRANSPORTING THE BODY
The Funeral Director gets the body released from the hospital or coroners facility. He then transports the body to the Funeral Facility. He is the custodian and is responsible for transportation until the burial.
The body is prepared for burial at the MCC Funeral Preparation room. This consists of washing the body, shrouding in “kafan”, and placing it in the casket.
It is highly recommended that close relatives of the deceased take part or assist in washing the body. The Funeral Director will be there to guide. But if that is not possible, then the Funeral Director will arrange for it.
Alhamdulillah, MCC has a funeral Preparation room within the MCC building at 4380 N. Elston Avenue, Chicago. The facility provides a dignified and convenient place for preparing bodies for burial, according to Islamic sharia requirements. The Facility consists of a body-washing table, a table to enshroud the body (kafan), and three refrigerated storage units for temporarily storing bodies. The facility is designed and built to meet the applicable city code requirements. Its closeness to the Masjid provides added convenience to the family of the deceased and soothing environment.
STEPS OF WASHING:
Privacy for the deceased is a crucial and important requirement at all times during the ghusl.
- The body of the deceased should be placed on a table or alike, the deceased’s clothes should be removed , and the body should be covered with a sheet of cloth at all times during the ghusl
- The Auwra (private parts) of the deceased should be covered with a sheet of cloth (The Auwra of a male is from the naval to the knee in the presence of males, for the female it is the same in the presence of females)
- The head and the upper body should be raised slightly to insure the washing water with exudations from the body flows down and does not run back to the body
- Remove any items or objects not already removed. These include watches, hospital or mortuary ID tags, wound dressings, IV lines, peg tubes, artificial limbs. If there is any active bleeding or wound discharge then that may be padded and dressed.
- The washer should start washing by saying: “Bismillah” (In the name of Allah)
- The washer wears gloves or winds a piece of cloth around his hand, and with this he cleans away any impurities from the body using water. Then he should dispose of the gloves.
- The washer should take another pair of gloves, press lightly on the stomach of the deceased to expel, if possible, any remnants from it, and then wash the body of all impurities using water. Then he should dispose of the gloves.
- The washer should take another pair of gloves, and wash the covered private parts, then dispose of the gloves.
The washer should perform wudhu (ablution) for the deceased without inserting the water in the nose and in the mouth. May use a piece of wet cotton wool in a small roll to clean nose and front teeth
- The washer should clean the body with water and soap (if available), starting from the head (hair, face and beard in men), then the upper right side of the body then the left side, after that the lower right side then the lower left.
- In the case of a female, her hair should be loosened, washed, combed, and be braided in three braids, and placed behind her back.
- The washing should be done three times, or five times, or seven times, as needed, providing that after washing the head, wash the right side before the left, and the upper parts before the lower ones.
- In the last wash, the washer may use camphor, or some perfume with the water.
- After that the body should be dried with a clean towel.
- Then the body should be covered with a clean sheet. The auwra must be kept covered at all times.
- Get ready to start the shrouding
AL-KAFAN (SHROUDING THE DEAD MUSLIM)
Shrouding should start immediately after washing and drying the body of the deceased. It is recommended to use white sheets from inexpensive material. Extravagance is not recommended in the Kafan (Shroud). All measurements may vary depending on the stature of the deceased.
The material of the sheet should not have any stitching, not be silk, nor should any gold be used.
We have a roll of fabric available should you need to cut a specific size.
THE KAFAN OF A MALE:
The Kafan of a male should consist of three white wrapping sheets, and 4 tie ropes
- Outer sheet – Lifafah
- Second sheet – Izaar
- Third sheet – Qamees (shirt)
- 3-4 ties
- 2 smaller sheets (satar) used cover the private parts (auwra) one before and the other after ghusl
STEPS OF SHROUDING:
- The wrapping sheets should be opened and spread out one on the top of the other.
- Roll up the front half of the top sheet towards the head – Qamees (shirt)
- The deceased, covered with a sheet (satar), is lifted and laid on his back on this top sheet (Qamees)
- The Qamees is then unrolled over the front of the body and once the body is covered then remove the satar (covering sheet)
- Some scent or perfume or sandal wood paste may be put on those parts of the body upon which one rests during prostration, that is the forehead, nose, hands, knees, and feet.
- If it is possible the deceased’s left hand should be placed on his chest, then put his right hand on the left hand like the way in the Salat (Prayer)
- The edge of the next sheet (Izaar) is then folded over the deceased right side, then the other edge over his left side.
- Then the last sheet (Lifafah) should be folded the same way.
- These sheets should be fastened with a piece of cloth (tie ropes), one above the head, another under the feet, and two around the body
- This completes the shrouding for the male.
THE KAFAN OF A FEMALE:
The Kafan of a female should consist of five white garments and 4 ties.
- Outermost sheet – Lifafah
- Second sheet – Sinaband – to cover from under armpits to thighs
- Third sheet – Izaar
- Fourth layer – Qamees
- Last piece – Orni – to cover head and hair
- 3-4 ties
- 2 smaller sheets (satar) used cover the private parts one before and the other after ghusl
SALAT-AL-JANAZA (FUNERAL PRAYER)
Salat al-Janaza, is the prayer for the forgiveness of the deceased, it is offered in a Masjid generally after a congregational prayer at MCC. It will make it convenient to prepare the body in the premises where the Masjid is located. The family and friends should be invited to participate in the prayer along with other Muslims who attend daily prayers. The Imam will go over the procedure of the prayer. The MCC Imam will be designated for all prayers conducted at MCC (No Exceptions). Typically the Janazah Salah is immediately prayed after the Zuhr prayer or Sunnah prayers.
STEPS OF SALATUL JANAZAH:
Muslims should form a minimum of three lines facing the Qiblah.
If there is only one Muslim with the Imam, he should stand behind the Imam.
The body should be placed in front of the person who leads the prayer.
In case there are more than one deceased (males and females), then the female should be placed in the first row in the direction of the Qiblah, then the male in the following row, then the Imam.
For example : If there are : a dead Muslim male, a female, a young girl, and a young boy, then behind the Qiblah, first place the body of the young girl, then the adult female, then the young boy, then the adult male, so the bodies are arranged in a way that female bodies are first, then the males
The Imam should stand by the middle of a female body, and by the head for a male body, this is due to the Hadith in which Anas related that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) leading Salatul Janazah for a dead male, the Prophet (PBUH) stood in front of the deceased head, and for a dead female, the Prophet (PBUH) stood in front of the middle of her body.( Authentic-Abu Dawood). In another Hadith Samura ben Jundub said when Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) made Salatul Janazah for a dead Muslim female, he stood in front of her waist (Muslim).
Behind the Imam, males stand in lines, then children, then females.
There is no Ruku, Sujud, Adhan, or Iqahma.
- Having the appropriate neeyah (Intention), raise your hands in the usual manner:
- Say “Allahu Akbar”(Allah is the Greatest)
- Fold your right hand over the left hand in the usual manner
- Recite the recite Surah Fatiha or (Thana) silently
- Then say : “Allahu Akbar”(Allah is the Greatest)
- Then recite the Durood-e-Ibrahim: ALLAHUMMA SALLI ALA MUHAMMADIW WA ALA AALI MUHAMMADIN KAMAA SALLAITA ALA IBRAHIMA WA ALA AALI IBRAHIMA INNAKA HAMIDUM MAJID. ALLAHUMMA BAARIK ALA MUHAMMADIW WA ALA AALI MUHAMMADIN KAMAA BAARAKTA ALA IBRAHIMA WA ALA AALI IBRAHIMA INNAKA HAMIDUM MAJID.
“O Allah, let Your Blessings come upon Muhammad and the family of Muhammad, as you have blessed Ibrahim and his family. Truly, You are Praiseworthy and Glorious. Allah, bless Muhammad and the family of Muhammad, as you have blessed Ibrahim and his family. Truly, You are Praiseworthy and Glorious”.
- Then say: “Allahu Akbar”(Allah is the Greatest)
- Then make dua’ (Supplicate) for the deceased. Allaahum-maghfir lihayyinaa, wa mayyitinaa, wa shaahidinaa, wa ghaa’ibinaa, wa sagheerinaa wa kabeerinaa, wa thakarinaa wa ‘unthaanaa. Allaahumma man ‘ahyaytahu minnaa fa’ahyihi ‘alal-‘Islaami, wa man tawaffaytahu minnaa fatawaffahu ‘alal-‘eemaani, Allaahumma laa tahrimnaa ‘ajrahu wa laa tudhillanaa ba’dahu.
- “O Allah forgive our living and our dead, those who are with us and those who are absent, our young and our old, our menfolk and our womenfolk. O Allah, whomever you give life from among us give him life in Islam, and whomever you take away from us take him away in Faith. O Allah, do not forbid us their reward and do not send us astray after them.
- Then say: “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is the Greatest)
- The Imam will then make Tasleem from right to left this will conclude the Janazah salah.
THE PROHIBITED TIMES OF SALATUL JANAZAH:
- From sunrise until the sun is fully risen
- At the zenith of the sun (the sun at meridian), until it passes the meridian
- From when the sun pales before sunset until it has set.
The family of the deceased person needs all the support it can get. With that in mind MCC has been providing funeral services to the community for decades.
Since 1989 MCC has owned a portion of the Rosehill Cemetery with more than 3,200 gravesites (There is no longer any new graves available at Rosehill Cemetery).
2,575 graves were purchased in Block 29 of Bohemian National Cemetery. Unless one has pre-purchased graves (prior need) at Rosehill Cemetery, this cemetery is now used. For the current and future needs all burials are at the Bohemian National Cemetery. The Central Park side of Cemetery and the Pulaski side both have Muslim Sections.
MCC has agreements worked out with both cemeteries for opening and closing the graves, visiting hours to the cemetery, and keeping cemeteries open for extended hours on certain designated days of the year.
Having purchased only a portion of these cemeteries, they are open for use by other communities besides MCC. There is no option of pre-purchasing graves at either cemetery Bohemian or Rosehill. No exceptions.
(Note: any unauthorized placement of gravestones or markers, makeshift gates, bricks, sticks, plastic flowers etc. will be removed and discarded. Any pins removed or damaging any tombstones or removal will be subjected to fines and immediate removal from the cemetery).
Please respect the rules and regulations as they protect both the families of the deceased as well as the rules of the cemetery.
There are three distinct components of the total cost associated with the final preparation/burial of a deceased:
BOHEMIAN Cost of the grave and concrete liner is, $1,000.
BOHEMIAN Infants buried at Bohemian: $250 (half grave for infant up 2 years of age) (Saturdays and Sundays) full price as an adult for Infants.
Opening/closing the grave**
a. ROSEHILL CEMETERY $1,225 Mon-Fri. Weekends, (Saturday $1,275) (Sunday $1,625) (infant $350 premature or within 2 month) (child under 5 years $500)
b. BOHEMIAN CEMETERY $1,120 Mon-Fri. Weekends, ($1,470 Saturday) (Sunday $2,100) (children burials under 2 years is free for half grave) (2 years or older must purchase full grave and is subjected to same charges as adults ).
3. FUNERAL DIRECTOR’S SERVICES $1,395 and up depending upon a type of casket used.
* Subjected to change without notice
** Weekdays (M-F until 3:00 pm) prices; substantially higher on weekends and subject to the availability of laborers. Charges for children/infants are available at MCC office.