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1
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1answer
36 views

Is there nowadays any advantage in having an Ark which is movable?

The Mishnah in Taanis 2 (1) refers to the practice of taking the Ark out of the synagogue into the the town square on the more serious fasts for rain and putting ashes on the ark: סדר תענייות ...
6
votes
3answers
378 views

Can you turn your back to the Aron HaKodesh?

I'm quite certain that it is mentioned in the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch that one should not turn one's back to the Aron HaKodesh (ark which holds the Torah Scrolls). Can anyone tell me where this is ...
3
votes
2answers
91 views

Could somebody identify this, and for what occasion it's used?

Firstly, I must apologise if this is not the right place to ask, and for the mediocre image quality. It appears to be a purple crown on a light box with Hebrew text, and is present at a number of ...
7
votes
3answers
9k views

Can a gentile go to Synagogue on Shabbat and what is forbidden on Shabbat for a gentile?

Is a gentile allowed to participate in Shabbat prayers in a Synagogue (of course he/she will not count for a minyan) if they do so in order to gain knowledge of Jewish customs for the purpose of ...
4
votes
2answers
144 views

Why do some synagogues offer kidush and others not?

Some (orthodox) synagogues in the United States offer kidush after Shabas-morning services every week; others do not. Is this division roughly along 'type' of synagogue? For example, do most Young ...
5
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1answer
59 views

Are prayers only accepted when offered in a Synagogue?

I've always believed that "all prayers are accepted", at least if they're done correctly and with intention. But I was recently reading through Berachot 6a when I read the following: אין תפלה של ...
9
votes
4answers
812 views

Where does “probeh” come from?

Every time recently that I've heard of an Orthodox congregation conducting a search for a rabbi, the stage at which the rabbi visits the community for a Shabbat and auditions for the position is ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Joining a synagogue after two generations non-practising

My (Jewish) great-grandparents came to the UK from Poland during the second world war, but due to their experiences of violent anti-semitism, hid their Jewishness from the public in the UK. The result ...
2
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1answer
57 views

Sources for different turnings during Hagba

Some shuls turn have the magbia turn completely around while others have him turn first left then right (there may be still other minhagim). Why the difference, and what's the mekor?
6
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4answers
322 views

In an average shul, how long before sunset does a combined weekday Mincha/Maariv service start?

Many shuls worldwide run combined weekday Mincha/Maariv services. How long before sunset do these services tend to start? Please specify a range, measured in "number of minutes". Also, please cite ...
7
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4answers
118 views

Comprehensive map/list of active Orthodox synagogues in the U.S

Does anyone know of a map or list of all the active Orthodox shuls in the U.S.? When I was looking for which residencies to apply to it was my limiting factor and sometimes it was hard to find out ...
5
votes
2answers
63 views

Should you say a blessing on a tallit gadol when you are performing a task in a shul that requires one due to a custom?

Should you say a blessing on a tallit gadol when you are performing a task in a shul that requires it (e.g.: being hazzan for mincha or getting an aliyah during mincha) ? Is there a difference if ...
10
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6answers
2k views

What do I need to know in order to properly have an aliya?

What things should I know in advance in case I get called up for an aliya during a Torah-reading service?
5
votes
4answers
278 views

Halachically, are you allowed to “remove” a sick person from the Mi Sheberach “list”?

In my shul, people mention or write the name of a sick person on a slip of paper and give this to the rabbi who adds it to an existing stack of names. Since I am the Torah reader, I announce Mi ...
1
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3answers
46 views

Parameters of schar pesios

There is a concept that one gets reward for the steps that one takes to travel to synagogue, and this reward extends even if one goes out of their way to go to a synagogue that is further away from ...
2
votes
1answer
32 views

Davening in which Beis Medrash?

Must one pray in the Beis Medrash he learns or in any Beis Medrash (and the practical difference would be if there's an advantage in the other Beis Medrash, such as if it's further away and there's ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

What is considered the “correct speed” for a Shabbat morning service?

I've had a few discussions with various co-congregants about "fast" and "slow" minyanim. Our shul building has 2 minyanim. The main one has a professional chazzan. We begin Shabbat services at 9 am ...
12
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3answers
274 views

Finding the quiet section of the synagogue

When you enter an unfamiliar synagogue, how do you find a seat in a section that's likely to have the least talking?
4
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2answers
192 views

In Yemenite Nusach, what are the differences between Shami and Baladi?

In my curiosity of possibly attending a Yemenite minyan on Shabbat, I viewed this directory of Yemenite congregations in the U.S. The last column lists 2 nuscha'ot - Shami and Baladi As I am a ...
-1
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2answers
62 views

Is there any shul where you have to takes off you shoes before entering the beit knesset?

Are there any particular Jewish communities where the congregants remove their shoes before entering the Beit Kneset?
3
votes
2answers
302 views

What kind of Mechitza is required when the women daven on the second floor?

Many times I have seen Shuls where women pray on a balcony on the second floor. What kind of Mechitza do they need? Is it enough if one can't see them (for example, if the angle is such that they ...
6
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3answers
1k views

Why do many non-Orthodox Jews come to shul regularly only after a parent's death?

I attend a Conservative / traditional shul. Primarily because of neighborhood demographics (the neighborhood is now largely Orthodox), we have tremendous problems forming a daily minyan. It seems that ...
5
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0answers
22 views

When does a place become a shul w/r/t saying me'ein sheva Friday nights?

Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 268:10 plus commentaries gives the rule that me'ein sheva (magen avot etc) isn't said at a private home, because it lacks the regularity of a shul. If someone has a ...
2
votes
2answers
92 views

Are Shiurim (Classes) for Women common in Orthodox Synagogues?

Is it quite common at most Orthodox shuls for there to be a women's shiur presented by a female? What topics would generally be discussed?
4
votes
2answers
65 views

Walking between women

Regarding 'walking between women', I have an especially hard time with this in shul when i come out of the room we daven in into the hallway. It is difficult to go by without waiting for them which is ...
4
votes
5answers
170 views

How do synagogues raise funds from people other than their own members?

My synagogue, like many (most?), gets only a portion of its annual income from member dues and investment income, with the rest coming from various fundraising activities. Most of this fundraising ...
5
votes
1answer
63 views

Is it more preferable to pray with concentration alone or with a minyan in shul?

There's a בית כנסת nearby that has מנינים every half hour between 6:00am until 9:20am. There's another one that has two מנינים, one at 6:40am and one at 7:40am. The בית כנסת that goes later has one ...
1
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0answers
25 views

When mashiach will come will Batei midrashim be transplanted to Israel? [duplicate]

I believe I heard that when Mashiach comes the batei midrashim (houses of study), batei knessiot (synagogues) and even houses of Jews outside Israel will fly or be transplanted to Israel. Has anyone ...
1
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0answers
51 views

According to halacha, how should a shul's minhag be decided?

I generally attend Nusach Ashkenaz Orthodox shuls. There are a few in my area. Each has some variations on the placement of certain parts during davening, all of which are fine and dependent on the ...
4
votes
1answer
188 views

Guitar during public weekday prayers

Is anyone aware of any halakhic opinion regarding the playing of musical instruments, guitar for example, in shul on a weekday, not shabbo. Does it have the same religious stigma and opposition as ...
2
votes
0answers
71 views

How was Shlomo Carlebach allowed to play his guitar during Havdalah in the shul?

Follow up to this answer: The article cited in the answer cites sources that prohibit playing a musical instrument in shul. I assume that this applies only during prayer. I recall that Shlomo ...
4
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0answers
28 views

Does the congregation recite certain sections of the prayers if a mourner is in the synagogue?

This morning, a mourner (in Shiva period) appeared in my shul. Art Scroll Ashkenaz siddur, among others, most likely, indicate that in a house of mourning, Tachanun is omitted and in Uva Letziyon, ...
6
votes
1answer
254 views

Making very loud drumming noise during davening

Many leaders and congregants in my shul bang with their hands on the shulchan and on their siddurs and stomp their feet in what is supposed to be the rhythm of the prayer's melody. The noise is ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Why do we light Chanukah candles in the shul?

Talmud Shabbat (I think it's around p. 21a) says that the mitzvah of lighting candles is in one's home. I did not see any mention, there, of a requirement to light in the shul. So, a few questions: ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

Are Bnei Noach welcome as participants in Orthodox Synagogues?

Are Bnei Noach normally allowed to take part in any of the liturgy in Orthodox synagogues? For example: responding to Torah blessings, singing Adon Olam, reciting Kaddish (except Mourner's Kaddish), ...
0
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0answers
17 views

What is Halacha concerning Dogs in the Shul? [duplicate]

As the title suggests, what is the halachic position regarding people bringing guide dogs or "companion" dogs into the synagogue?
10
votes
2answers
160 views

If a mourner comes to services late, in the middle of the kaddish, has he missed that kaddish?

I'm saying kaddish for my mother-in-law. Occassionally, I walk into shul and the congregation is already in the middle of the Rabbi's Kaddish (say at Y'he sh'may raba"). Can I join in that kaddish at ...
10
votes
1answer
250 views

Entering / Davening in a Karaite synagogue

Is one permitted to enter and/or daven in a Karaite synagogue nowadays (according to Rabbinite law)?
5
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0answers
39 views

Repeated Hagbah by the same individual

From this question, it's clear that there is a halachic requirement to do a "good" hagbah. This one emphasizes that, by saying that a gabbai who knows the individual can't do a good job shouldn't ...
16
votes
4answers
809 views

Shape of the Luchot

According to the Talmud in Bava Batra 14a, the Luchot HabBerit were square. Where did the common "tablet" shape come from, with rectangles and a rounded top? Besides in pictures, I see it in ...
9
votes
1answer
151 views

Is a person allowed to sit in someone's reserved shul seat before that person appears?

My shul sells tickets for High Holiday seating. These are paid specific seats for the person who reserved them. Sometimes, outsiders attend the shul on Rosh Hashanna. Our shul doesn't refuse them ...
6
votes
1answer
278 views

Can a service dog enter a Temple during service?

At Rosh Hashanah service today, a congregant brought his service dog with him. He's not blind, the service dog vest said it was for hearing. Is the temple being kind, or are they required to permit ...
4
votes
3answers
7k views

What is the difference between a temple, a synagogue, and a congregation?

Jewish communities of worship are referred to by different English words: temple synagogue congregation (Feel free to edit the question to add to this list.) What are their differences? I am ...
1
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1answer
61 views

What is the ideal design of a synagogue?

What guidance is given for ideal qualities of a synagogue? (eg what shape) Since most buildings require a degree of compromise, are we told which architectural features should be actively avoided? ...
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
194 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
184 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
73 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
171 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." ...