Gathering on the fortieth day of the deceased's death

Q 3: In Egypt people hold a ceremony marking the fortieth day of someone's death. (Part No. 9; Page No. 73) It is known that this act is a Bid`ah (innovation in religion) dating back to the era of the Pharaohs. The family of the deceased gather or invite Qur'an reciters to make Khatmah (reciting the entire Qur'an). Afterwards, the reciters are invited to a meal and given payment. The same scenario is repeated on the first anniversary of the death. What is the ruling on the recitation and the money paid for it? Does the reward of recitation reach the deceased? Is this payment regarded as ill-gotten gain and what is the ruling on receiving a fee for reciting the Qur'an?

A: Gathering on the fortieth day following someone's death and making Khatmah for him is Bid`ah. It is Haram (prohibited) for those reciters to eat from the meal offered to them and to take a payment for recitation. It is also Haram to hold the ceremony marking the first anniversary of someone's death. Reciting Qur'an is a pure `Ibadah (worship). It is impermissible to take payment for reciting it. However, it is permissible to accept payment for teaching the Qur'an and performing Ruqyah (reciting Qur'an and supplicating over the sick as a cure). According to Ijma` (consensus of scholars). Ibn Taymiyyah stated that taking payment for reciting the Qur'an is Haram. The scholars unanimously agree on this view. (Part No. 9; Page No. 74) May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and Companions.