The Role of Indigenous Languages in Delivering Friday Sermons for Sustainable Development among Selected Mosques in Nasarawa State, Nigeria


Authors: Yahaya Sulaiman, Muhammad Mustapha (Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Nigeria)
Speaker: Muhammad Mustapha
Topic: Language, Community, Ethnicity
The GLOCAL AFALA 2023 General Session


Abstract

The statutory language of propagation in Islam has been Arabic. Arabic is the language of Arabs whose son was chosen by Allah as his last and most favourite Prophet, and the Qur’an was also revealed in Arabic language. So, the sentiment is there for Arabic to be the leading language of religious activities in Islam. However, it has been noted over the years that for non-Arab Muslims the language in use (i.e. Arabic) in most religious activities, such as Friday sermons has been posing great challenges to the followers of the religion. This is partly because most Muslims only know how to recite Qur’an in Arabic without necessarily knowing the meanings of what they read. It is in this realisation that some Muslim Ulamah (Imams and preachers) conduct their activities, including Friday sermons in the most popular language of their people. This research work takes a random look at some of these Friday sermons offered using indigenous languages in Nasarawa State to ascertain the levels of its coverage, impact and accessibility for sustainable development. Using interview method, the researchers collected data from selected Friday mosques in Nasarawa State in addition to religious scriptures and analysed them. It was found from the analysis carried out that the use of Hausa, Eggon, Alago, Yoruba and English has become necessarily important in delivering Jumu’a (Friday) sermon in different parts of Nasarawa State. It is thus recommended that other Friday mosques should emulate the act as one important medium of delivering Da’wah in clear language among the Muslim population.

Keywords: Nasarawa, Friday, Sermon, Malam, Language