In Judaism, Gentiles are generally forbidden to study Torah devotedly. But are they allowed to recite a whole Jewish prayer, like the morning or the evening prayer?

I was juggling some ideas but couldn't arrive at anything specific about all of the following aspects:

  • Reciting numerous Na"ch passages, like Pesukei Dezimrah
  • Reciting numerous Torah passages, like "Shemah Israel"
  • Reciting Blessings - pronouncing the Holy Name
  • Reciting Amidah
  • Reading Kaddish

2 Answers 2


The general attitude towards prayers of non-Jews is from Isiah 57.7:

כי ביתי בית תפילה יקרא לכל העמים -- For My House shall be called a House of Prayer for all the nations.

  • Brachos

The Rema paskens that one should respond 'Amen' to the blessings of a non-Jew, providing one heard the entire blessing.

A non-Jew should not say anything false in his prayers, so may not bless שלא עשני גוי, or say אלקי אבותינו (see Shulchan Aruch 199,4 that a convert may say אלקי אבותינו, inferring that a non-Jew cannot). Any prayer which discusses the privilege of being part of the Chosen Nation would have to be edited to be truthful (like בחר אותם rather than בחר בנו, etc.)

  • Pesukim paraphrased into the Tefillah

Reciting passages of Tanach found in the nussach hatefillah would not constitute 'Limud Torah' (it is in the context of tefillah, not limud. Similar to the poskim who say one does not need to say Birchas Hatorah before selichos.

  • Birchas Hamitzvos

The Rambam writes that non-Jews may perform any Mitzvah (with noteable exceptions) and receive reward. Regarding Birchas Hamitzvos, R' Moshe Feinstein (Dibros Moshe Kiddushin §45.2) writes that they should not bless. R' Yisroel Gustman (Kuntresei Shiurim §20) argues and rules that they may bless on any mitzvah they can perform.

  • Time of need

Igros Moshe (OCH V2, §25) rules that in an עת צרה, a non-Jew may be obligated to pray for his needs, although in regular tefilla he is not obligated.

  • In a Shul

According to the understanding of the Shaarei Teshuva and Elya Rabba, the Shulchan Aruch (OCH 55.20) rules that a non-Jew destroys the 'tziruf' of a minyan. (Others translate עכו״ם in that context as the actual Avoida Zara, not just a non-Jew. See Magen Avraham ad loc). The Shevet Halevi (V2, §59.3) paskens accordingly that the minyan should not be in the presence of a non-Jew. Some poskim allow a גר תושב, however.

  • Birchas Kohanim

The Maharil (שו”ת מהרי”ל החדשות סימן כא) writes that one should not allow non-Jews into shul during Birchas Kohanim. The Shu"t Zera Emes (V.3, §12) writes that Kohanim may not duchan if there are non-Jews in the vicinity. Shu"t Yosef Ometz, however, disagrees and permits Kohanim to duchan even in the presence of non-Jews.

  • Thank you, I +1ed for your effort. 1. Since when we derive Halochos from writings? The posuk speaks of the times of Moshiach, so it seems not "ביתי נקרא", but "ייקרא". 2*inferring that a non-Jew can not* - Who inferred it? a very interesting point. 3. What about the Amida in full? and the last 4. the Kaddish. Thank you again.
    – Al Berko
    Commented May 16, 2019 at 11:57

Yes. It's says, 'כי ביתי בית תפילה יקרא לכל העמים'. "My house shall be a house of prayer to all nation". Thus, they can

  • 2
    This just speaks about where they can pray not what they can say
    – Double AA
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 20:26
  • 1
    It seems that the verse speaks of the times of the Moshiach, in the "world to come", hence the future tense.
    – Al Berko
    Commented May 16, 2019 at 11:53

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