(AhlulBayt News Agency) - The office of Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani’s Hajj delegation offer cultural services as well as answering religious inquiries during Hajj season every year.
A senior member of Grand Ayatollah Sistani’s Hajj delegation Hujjat al-Islam Sheikh Muhammad al-Hasoun had an interview with Hawzah News in which he elaborated on their activities during Hajj rituals.
Hujjat al-Islam al-Hasoun remarked:
Following the demise of Grand Ayatollah al-Khoei which marked the beginning of Grand Ayatollah Sistani’s position as a Shia source of emulation, the office of Ayatollah Sistani in Qom sends a delegation to Hajj every year in order to provide service to pilgrims.
Since the beginning of his authority as a source of emulation, Grand Ayatollah Sistani sends only one Hajj delegation to Saudi Arabia whose head is my brother Hujjat al-Islam Sayyed Javad Shahrestani, the representative of Grand Ayatollah Sistani in Iran.
This delegation which is annually sent from Qom to Hajj consists of a group of seminary scholars and officials of Grand Ayatollah Sistani’s related offices; each member of this delegation serves in different groups during Hajj rituals.
The most important group is the one that answers pilgrims’ religious inquiries and it consists of several scholars from the office of Grand Ayatollah Sistani in Qom, Iran. They provide answers to pilgrims’ jurisprudential questions while performing Hajj rituals.
The second group is in charge of cultural programs during Hajj. Their main mission is to organize scientific and cultural meetings with different groups of pilgrims from around the world.
The main duty of the third group is to receive guests. Considering that hundreds of pilgrims visit the office of Grand Ayatollah Sistani during Hajj in Saudi Arabia, there’s a group who will receive these pilgrims and give them information and necessary directions.
Several prominent figures and pilgrim groups from different countries come to visit Hujjat al-Islam Shahrestani in his office during Hajj season and these meetings need to be arranged. There are people who can speak Persian, English, Arabic, Turkish as well as Urdu in the office to help these guests.
We also have a group for religious funds and Islamic tax in the office to help pilgrims pay their alms and Khums during Hajj.
The last one is the service group which consists of several young people who organize the affairs for hosting guests and their accommodation services.