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5
votes
0answers
20 views

Apartment buildings higher than the shul

Shabbat 11a states that a city in which houses (but not towers or castles/fortresses [unsure about the translation]) are built higher than the synagogue will eventually be destroyed. ואמר רבא בר ...
8
votes
2answers
197 views

Are Synagogues “holy ground,” offering protection from evil creatures?

I'm not a Jew, but I'm writing a fantasy novel set in medieval Europe, and one of my characters is a Jew. I've got a group of people with diverse backgrounds who've come together to fight a great ...
1
vote
2answers
186 views

Is women saying Kaddish an issue of Kol Isha?

I have seen it discussed whether or not there is an issue of kol isha by kriyas haTorah, but I have not seen any sources addressing whether there is an issue of kol isha by kaddish, specifically...? ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

What is the source and reason for saying “Yeyasher Kochacha” or “Chazak Ubaruch”?

Follow up to this M.Y. question Why do congregants say to a person who has received an aliyah or was shaliach tzibbur (there may be other situations, but I can't think of any others) either "Yeyasher ...
3
votes
2answers
108 views

What is the status of the Yad we use to read from the Torah?

Does the Yad for reading Torah has the status of tashmish mitzvah or tashmish kedusha? Background to the question: Our shul has a BIG yad in extremely bad shape. Impossible to fix anymore. It is ...
5
votes
0answers
173 views

Why no 15-minutes-early clause in English rabbis' contracts?

Rabbi Yitzchak Reuven Rubin wrote in 2001: In fact, it wasn't long ago that every rabbi in England was required by contract to "present himself fifteen minutes before the time of Divine worship." ...
2
votes
0answers
62 views

Breslov Lecha Dodi in Katamon, Jerusalem

I've been twice to the Breslov Minyan next to the hospital in Katamon for Kabbalat Shabbat. It's probably my favourite minyan in the world, and the most amazing part of the davening is the Lecha Dodi, ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

Can or should a shul expel talkative members who are also the shul's major benefactors?

Sadly, talking during davening in shul is a major problem. Lets say a shul has a few people who constantly talk loudly throughout davening and they disturb the other people and the rabbi. The rabbi, ...
9
votes
4answers
127 views

Torah studies at Synagogue

How do we make studying Torah by adults a central part of our synagogue?
0
votes
1answer
43 views

Can I talk about my business in shul if it is to help another Jew avoid a transgression?

Reuven's job is to check clothing for shaatnez and remove it. Shimon gives Reuven a suit to check. Later they meet in the synagogue. Mishna Berura 151 (1)[2] forbids even mundane talk for one's ...
2
votes
0answers
77 views

Permissibility of Prayer in a Sabbatean Synagogue

Inspired by the Churva Synagogue of R. Yehuda HaChassid (18th cent.) who was likely a Sabbatean (not to be confused with the 12th century rabbi of the same name), and his congregation which almost ...
0
votes
0answers
60 views

Giving money to a shul

Someone told me that giving money towards a shul in order to enhance and beautify the physical structure of the building is a mitzvah. Is there source for this?
2
votes
4answers
2k views

Please explain the idea of the Chair of Elijah in synagogue

What is the purpose and meaning of the Chair of Elijah? I understand that (some?) synagogues have a chair called the Chair of Elijah. Does this mean that it is a special chair that is set aside for ...
0
votes
1answer
101 views

Can anybody read from the torah or prophets in a synagogue?

I am trying to understand the context of a passage from the Christian gospels. Luke 4:16 says that Jesus went into the synagogue and started reading from the book of Isaiah. At that time could ...
6
votes
1answer
145 views

What is the source for Rav Soloveitchik's assertion that 1st Century Christians introduced mixed seating for prayers?

In the collection of Rav Soloveitchik’s responsa Community, Covenant and Commitment, there is a series of letters railing against mixed seating in the synagogue. Amongst the points raised there is a ...
-4
votes
1answer
148 views

The blessing for not talking in shul

I read in תוכחת חיים that , "One who is careful not to speak in shul during davening will he blessed to see children, long life, great success, and will NOT suffer the pains of Gehinnom. He will never ...
0
votes
1answer
98 views

Can a shul be said to have a second Bimah?

Here is a picture from a shul that has a raised platform by the Ark. They also have the Bimah where the chazzan davens from, in the centre of the shul. Is that raised platform near the ark, also ...
1
vote
3answers
127 views

davening in a shul with member who are mechalel shabbos be'farhesya

someone told me that he stopped davening in a certain shul because he saw members driving to shul on shabbos (the shul doesnt close their parking lot on shabbos.) is there a makkor in halacha not to ...
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Should one who is sick attend minyan? [duplicate]

If one has cold/ sickness that is contagious, should he attend minyan while risking getting other people sick or should he daven at home?
12
votes
2answers
481 views

What do I do when asked to “open the Aron” or “take out the Torah”?

If I'm in synagogue and someone asks me if I can "open the Aron" or "take out the Sefer Torah," what will I be expected to do, and when?
8
votes
2answers
125 views

Lifting Torah during Bracha When Called for an Aliyah

I have noticed that while making the Bracha for an aliyah, many people lift the Torah when Hashem's name is recited. Is there a source for this?
2
votes
2answers
280 views

Exactly how should the shaliach bow for Barachu?

In every synagogue I have been in, the shaliach zibur has bowed in some way at Barachu. I presume there must be a foundation for this. If so, there should be a correct way to bow. I am seeking clarity ...
3
votes
1answer
124 views

Attending a Bar Mitzvah at a Reform Synagogue

Do any contemporary Orthodox poskim discuss the matter? What potential problems could arise from attending, or from not attending, if the Bar Mitzvah boy is a close relative?
5
votes
2answers
183 views

The “Canon” - Basic Sefarim for a Shul Library?

Our shul library has been neglected for many, many years, and b'h' we are finally cleaning and organizing it. We have some great books, but I'd like to know of some resources identifying important ...
16
votes
2answers
752 views

Halachot of Shul Mechitzot

What are some good books, articles, websites, or seforim for learning about the Halachot of constructing and maintaining a Shul Mechitza (the barrier between the men and women sections)? Issues ...
11
votes
1answer
138 views

Do you have to consider neighbors when building a shul?

Are there any halachic obligations to consider the averse effects that building a shul may have on Jewish neighbors? This may include things like lowering property value, noise and other disturbances, ...
7
votes
3answers
552 views

Ostrich eggs in Shul?

Kinyan L'Shabbos (published weekly by Hamodia) - July 18, 2012, page 11 has a fascinating article by Rabbi Avraham Y. Heschel regarding an ancient custom of displaying ostrich eggs in a Beis Knesses. ...
7
votes
2answers
122 views

Half Aleinu outside a shul

Has anyone heard of the minhag to say Aleinu only until "Al ken Nekave Lach" (only the 1st paragraph) if one is not praying in a synagogue? I've been told a number of times about this practice in ...
-5
votes
1answer
85 views

Can a woman be part of the decision regarding a shul's minhag?

There are a few areas in davening where each shul has it's own minhag (custom). For example, whether to say Hallel the 1st two nights of Pesach, in shul. Some shuls have a ritual "committee" that ...
1
vote
1answer
177 views

Does “שויתי ה׳ לנגדי תמיד” relate to a synagogue?

"שויתי ה׳ לנגדי תמיד" ("I have placed God before me constantly", Ps. 16:8) is cited in Rama (OC 1:1) as support for what he writes there: that one should be aware that he's always before God, who can ...
-1
votes
1answer
49 views

Is there a recommended timing chart for each section of davening?

I know that davening should not be rushed. However, inevitably, it seems that it is, in many shuls. Weekday morning shacharit, in particular, seems to be the most rushed as people have to commute to ...
5
votes
5answers
382 views

Sources to encourage returning s'farim to their places

Hanging signs saying the above was not enough to make people in my synagogue put back the s'farim they have used into the bookcases. What other mitzvos could I bring on my next edition of the ...
6
votes
1answer
207 views

“Qof, Qof” What does this mean?

An old (formerly used) synagogue building in my town has this sign on the front of it: The text says "Shaaray Torah", the name of the congregation, but what is the meaning of the two qofs above it? ...
2
votes
6answers
470 views

Yotzros and Musaf for the 4 Parshios

Are there any Nusach Ashkenaz Shuls that say Yotzros or Musaf on the weeks of the Four Parshios?
10
votes
2answers
255 views

What does one do when one needs to bentch gomel?

One who has recovered from a serious illness or accident is supposed to bentch gomel during the torah service. What do you need to know to do this? Specifically: When is the right time -- the ...
4
votes
0answers
49 views

Using someone's mother/father's disliked name for ritual purposes

Closely related to this question, what happens if someone's mother or father doesn't/didn't like her or his name, and the child now either needs a MiSheBerach or is called to the Torah? What name ...
3
votes
0answers
94 views

MiSheBerach for someone who doesn't like his/her own name

Another question asked about a case in which someone does not want to use his/her mother's name in a MiSheBerach. What if someone dislikes his/her own given name and goes by a different name? What ...
10
votes
1answer
84 views

Can you have a trash bin in shul?

Over Shabbos, the Shul in which I davened had a trash bin towards the back. This caused me to realize that I do not think that I have ever seen another permanent Shul sanctuary which had a garbage ...
2
votes
1answer
153 views

“Pulpit” on the Bimah

In most Orthodox Ashkenazi schuls, it is customary to have a lectern (the amud) at the front of the room, below the duchan, from whence the baal tefillah leads. Typically, I have noticed that it is ...
0
votes
1answer
144 views

How many times do women say Kaddish in shul?

If only a woman in the shul is saying Kaddish, does she say it once or every time that the siddur says Kaddish yasom (the Kaddish for mourners)? From this answer, I see that it is permitted for her ...
1
vote
4answers
503 views

How Can One Know If A Synagogue is Orthodox or Modern Orthodox?

I've looked on the websites and, other than just going in and asking each and every local synagogue, is there some easy way to know if an orthodox synagogue is Modern or Traditional?
3
votes
0answers
37 views

Candles by the amud [duplicate]

Why do people light candles in shul by the amud during davening? Is the custom specific to certain groups?
19
votes
3answers
1k views

What halachic issues are involved in turning off a mobile phone while praying the quiet Amidah?

A person realises during his quiet Amidah, that he has not turned off his mobile phone. He is worried lest it ring while he is praying. On the other hand, turning it off will interfere with his ...
4
votes
2answers
157 views

Whence the minhag to light in shul by day?

In pretty much every shul and yeshiva I've been in has lit Chanukah candles by shacharis, the same number of candles that were lit the night before. What is the source for this custom, and why is it ...
3
votes
1answer
226 views

Could the minhag of lighting menorah in Shuls have developed from when guests would stay in Shul?

Could the minhag (=custom) of lighting menorah in synagogues have developed from when guests would stay in the synagogue? Does anyone bring this as a source for the minhag? If so, would it not apply ...
3
votes
1answer
99 views

when is shushing in a shul permited, when forbiden and when obligated

In my shul there is someone who shushes people that talk. He believes that he is obligated to do this. I understand that there is a prohibition against embarrassing people publicly and that sometimes ...
3
votes
1answer
99 views

How is the menora lit in the synagogue?

The menora in the synagogue is normally situated on the south side of the synagogue (O Ch 671:7). On which side of the menora is it lit? I can think of two options: The person lighting faces south ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

is woman yoga (exercise) in shul ok

If we take the opinion that yoga is not avoda zorah (I am looking for sources on these questions, I know to ask a LOR) Can there be a woman's yoga class in a shul (not during davening)? Would no ...
10
votes
1answer
7k views

First trip to the synagogue! Tips and advice please!

I am preparing for my first trip to a synagogue after the High Holy Days. My first visit will be to a Modern Orthodox Synagogue. I have interacted with the Rabbi by email and we will be meeting ...
10
votes
2answers
168 views

Is it Halachically wrong to avoid the rabbi's sermon?

At some point in our history, the rabbi's Derashah, or sermon, went from being taboo to being so integral to the service that some Shuls have ushers to keep the doors closed at that time so that no ...