The Friday prayer (Arabic: صَلاة الجُمُعَة) is a congregational prayer with two rak'as, prayed in the Friday noon instead of the noon prayer, there is two sermons said by imam al-jumu'a who also leads the prayer. Most of the Shi'a faqihs consider praying the Friday prayer, in the time of the occultation of Imam al-Mahdi (aj), as an optionally incumbent duty.
In Sura al-Jumu'a, the importance of the Friday prayer is stated; also in hadith the Friday prayer is referred to as the "hajj of the poor" and leaving it causes the hypocrisy and difficulties in the one's life.
Holding the Friday prayer is one of the signs of the unity of the Islamic society and it is necessary to be held congregational. Considering the political and social content of the sermons, the Friday prayer is a worship which has also a political and social importance.
The Friday prayer is usually held in general mosques of cities. Some factors, like the development and expansion of cities, presence of different sects and schools, and political and security considerations, cause that multiple Friday prayers in one city. For example, according to Ibn Battuta, in the 13th century, the Friday prayer was being held in 11 mosques of Baghdad. In the Mamalik period because of the immensity of the population, the Friday prayer was held even in local mosques and schools. Read more...