Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states: “There is a distinction to be made between the ideal and what is acceptable. Ideally Muslims should be served by people who are educated in their religion. We are not to expect this from those who are not trained. Unfortunately, the Muslim community is not taking its religion very seriously, for to respect Islam is to respect religious knowledge. Like all other fields of study, proper knowledge of Islam can only be learned from a trained scholar.
However, because of the situation we are facing in this part of world where we don’t have many trained people to serve us, we can make use of whatever resources are available If a person cannot write a khutbah because he is not well versed in Islam, then there is nothing wrong with him getting a written khutbah delivered by a scholar and making use of it since he has no other alternative. But while doing so he should keep in mind the following integrals of khutbah:
1) Start with praising Allah and then read the Shahadah (Testimony of Faith) and send salutations and benedictions on the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). This can be done in Arabic by saying: Al-hamdu lillahi rabbi al-`alameen; ashahdu an laa ilaha illa Allah wa ashadhua anna Muhammadan rasulullah; Allahumma salli `ala Muhammadin wa`ala alihi wa ashabihi wa man tabi`ahum bi ihsanin ila Yawmi ad-Deen. (Praise be to Allah, Lord of the worlds; I bear witness there is no god but Allah; I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and Messenger; may Allah shower him and his family and companions and all those who follow them with peace and blessings until the Day of Judgment.)
2) Advise people to be mindful of Allah. You may do this in Arabic by saying: Useekum wa nafsee awwalan bi taqwa Allah. (I advise you and myself to be ever mindful and conscious of Allah).
3) Recite a Qur’anic verse or an authentic tradition of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him)and explain the meaning.
4) Conclude the first sermon with a reminder for istighfar; this can be by saying: Aqoolu qawlee hadha wa astaghfiru Allaha lee walkum wa lisa’iri al-muslimeen. (I say this and ask forgiveness of Allah on behalf of myself and you and all Muslims).
5) Then sit down and make istighfar.
6) Stand up once again and praise Allah and send salutations on the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).
7) One may say a few words of advice again, if he so wishes; otherwise, one may conclude the khutbah by sending salutations on the Prophet and then praying for all believers, living and dead; we may also add any other du`a’s we may choose.
8) If you have difficulty in saying the Arabic portion you may train yourself by listening to a recorded khutbah on
Here are a few essential du`a’s; Remember supplications can be made in English with or without the following:
Allahumma ighfir li al-mu’mineena wa al-mu’minat; al-ahya’ minhum wa al-amwat. (O Allah, forgive all believers, males and females, the living as well as the dead).
Rabbana atina fi ad-dunya hasanatan wa fi al-akhirati hasanatan wa qina `adhaba an-nar. (Our Lord, grant us good in this world and good in the next world and save us from the torments of hell-fire!)
Rabbana la tada` lana dhanban illa ghafartahu wa la hamman illa farrajtahu wa la mareedhan illa shafaytahu wa la mayyitan illa rahimtahu ya arhama ar-rahimeen. (Our Lord, do not leave for us any sin without forgiving it; do not leave for us any worry without removing it; do not leave any sick among us without granting him cure and making him well, do not leave any dead among them without granting him mercy).
Following this, you ask people to stand up for Salah and request the caller to make the Iqamah.
Remember: Once we cherish good intention and do what we can do according to the best of our abilities, Allah will reward us and forgive us our slips and mistakes. May Allah forgive us our trespasses and make us strive earnestly in His path. Ameen.”