Why doesn't Muslims have organized missionaries for humanitarian activity like Christians do?

It would be a very effective way of spreading Islam, as it has proven effective for Christianity. Even if it doesn't help much to spread Islam, Muslims can do it just anyway.

Why are Missionaries ignored in Islam?

NOTE: Please do not down-vote without first understanding the question.

  • You are absolutely right!
    – Ali
    Commented Nov 18, 2012 at 13:48
  • isn't it a duplicate of this question?
    – owari
    Commented Nov 19, 2012 at 6:26
  • Islam itself is complete of humanitarian activities. There are various means by which Islam spreads one of which you already mentioned.
    – mtk
    Commented Nov 20, 2012 at 13:42
  • Some groups inside Muslim countries use this form to gain power or at least the support of the community or people creating what one may call a parallel society or rather a parallel system opposing the government like the Muslim Brothers did in Egypt (they owned and managed at a time the best working hospitals etc.).
    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Nov 17, 2016 at 11:03

4 Answers 4


Da'wah is considered a duty of every Muslim.

There are several documented cases of missionary work in the history of Islam. If you look at it, Islam was rarely spread by organized missionaries, but by powerful individuals. The Prophet Muhammad SAWS himself and his closest companions were powerful and honest people whom everyone respected. The first missionary movements were liberation wars against kings who did not support freedom of religion.

A person who spends all his time preaching to others will often not be respected by people outside the religion. If someone comes up to you while you're waiting for a bus and preaches to you, it can be quite annoying. This can be counter-productive to the spread of Islam.

Islam spread fastest by doing, rather than talking. A person who is a brilliant scientist, charismatic businessman, or brave humanitarian will gain more respect than someone who spends his whole time preaching to people. If this person denotes himself as a devout Muslim, by excusing himself for prayer when working with non-Muslims or fasting during Ramadan, people will associate him/her with Islam.

Passive da'wah can prove to be more effective than active da'wah. And there are also some semi-missionary groups like Islamic Relief who actively da'wah, by helping others.


Da'wah is (فرض كفاية) meanings if a certain group of people of a community raise/come up and do da'wah, than the obligation of Da'wah is taken away for the rest of the community. But because we are in a corrupt age, Da'wah is (فرض عين) on every Muslim according to their ability and knowledge.

Ibn Baaz said:

“At a time when there is a shortage of callers, when evil is prevalent and ignorance dominates, da‘wah becomes fard ‘ayn on everyone according to their ability.”

Da'wah has three aspects to it.

  1. The call/message
  2. The caller
  3. The called

now number two, the caller, in Arabic is (Adda'ee/الداعي), and the caller is the one who gives or spreads the message of Islam, you may also call the person a missionary or anything else that is it's synonym. So one cannot say there are no missionaries in Islam, as for organized missionaries, as I mentioned above, Da'wah is obligatory on all Muslims according to their ability, and their knowledge. It is part of Da'wah to at least have a Da'wah plan, what to do, how to present, and so on.

Sources: Islamic online university, Da'wah training course, module 1


Actually Muslims do have missionaries like Christianity but they are not called missionaries, rather they are called Tablighi Jamaat.

See details about their work and practices on wiki here:

About Tablighi Jamaat

First paragraph from this link, for lazy people like me.

Tablighi Jamaat (Urdu: تبلیغی جماعت‎, Tablīghī Jamā‘at; Arabic: جماعة التبليغ‎‎, Jamā‘at at-Tablīgh; Bengali: তাবলীগ জামাত; Hindi: तबलीग़ी जमात; English: Society for spreading faith) is a global Sunni Islamic proselytizing and revivalist movement that focuses on urging Muslims to return to orthodox Sunni Islam,[5][6] and particularly in matters of ritual, dress, and personal behavior.[7] The organisation is estimated to have between 12 million[8] and 150 million adherents[3] (the majority living in South Asia[9]), and a presence in somewhere between 150[8] and 213 countries.[3] It has been called "one of the most influential religious movements in 20th century Islam".[10]

references are available on wikipedia


Before voting down you should actually change the question or read the definition of a missionary. It's almost same what Tablighi Jamaat. Also if you hate this Jamaat then I cannot help you sorry, secondly I have mentioned its name because it holds largest religious gathering each year more then Hajj Pilgrims in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh.

Here is the defination of Missionaries

mis·sion·ar·y ˈmiSHəˌnerē/ noun plural noun: missionaries

a person sent on a religious mission, especially one sent to promote Christianity in a foreign country.

  • 1
    Tablig jamat doesn't have hospitals, schools, charitable trusts, and so on. So, I don't understand how it qualifies as a missionary.
    – user195
    Commented Sep 21, 2016 at 11:19
  • Missionaries mission is not to spread hospitals, schools, charitable trusts, and so on, but to spread Christianity, it is their way of spreading of Christianity, but Muslim ways are different to spread Islam, and you know Islam and Christianity are different religion not same Commented Sep 21, 2016 at 12:31
  • @anonymous I don't understand how you can post such question without having complete knowledge of what you are asking Commented Sep 21, 2016 at 12:48
  • @MuhammadIrfan "A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to proselytize and/or perform ministries of service, such as education, literacy, social justice, health care, and economic development." from Wikipedia. Anonymous' comment is completely reasonable here, since he's clearly asking why Muslims don't have organized missionaries "like Christians do".
    – goldPseudo
    Commented Sep 22, 2016 at 18:58
  • @goldPseudo, very nice, and where is the complete definition The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin missionem (nom. missio), meaning "act of sending" or mittere, meaning "to send".[3] The word was used in light of its biblical usage; in the Latin translation of the Bible, Christ uses the word when sending the disciples to preach in his name, get more knowledge just don't get angry. Don't like answer don't accept, I am not here to comment with anyone. I just gave my answer, its not necessary you like it or not and acpt it or not Commented Sep 23, 2016 at 10:54

We are not missionaries. The role of a Muslim is not to convert the rest of the world to Islam. We should instead focus on becoming the best possible Muslims, and leading the best possible lives, that we can. If the rest of the world then chooses to follow our lead, so much the better

  • I think that was your personal opinion. Otherwise, not having missionaries is one of the reasons why Muslims are so lagged.
    – user195
    Commented Nov 17, 2016 at 10:02
  • Salam and welcome to Islam SE the Q&A site about Islam. We expect answers to be well elaborated, focused on answer OP's question and claims to be supported by evidences I strongly suggest you to read How to Answer and to re-edit your answer to make it fit. To learn more about our site and model I further recommend you to take our 2 min. tour and check our help center.
    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Nov 17, 2016 at 10:17

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