Can a Muslim pray to Allah in a church?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

A Muslim can pray to Allah anywhere including a church. However, it is not appropriate for a Muslim to go to church, and pray and worship there like Christians. It is haram. It is forbidden for Muslims to resemble even the traditions of non-Muslims; it is definitely a bigger sin to enter a temple of another religion and to worship like them. Something like that can cause a person to forget his religion and to adopt the other religion.   
The Prophet (pbuh) states the following:

“He who tries to resemble a nation is one of them.” (Abu Dawud-Kitabul-Libas, hadith no 3512)

One can go to a church for two reasons:

1. Those who go to church because they are Christians.
2. Those who go to a church to visit it and for touristic purposes.

After this classification, let us explain the decree on going to church:

a. A person in the first group is a Christian since he accepts himself as a Christian; he is regarded as a non-Muslim; that is, he is not a Muslim.

b. A person in the first group goes there in order to see how the church was arranged and built. When a Christian goes to a mosque to visit it, he does not become a Muslim; similarly, if a Muslim goes to a church to visit it does not become a Christian.

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