When we pray for the healing (refuah) of a woman or girl, we refer to her as "(patient's name) bat (patient's mother's name)", for example "Shoshana bat Michal" or "Rivka bat Shifra Aviva". This is according to the template of the Mi Sheberach "Prayer For A Sick Person" (Siddur, Ahavas Shalom - The Complete ArtScroll Siddur, Nusach Ashkenaz, Rabbi Nosson Scherman, Mesorah Publications Ltd., 1984).

However, after a woman gives birth, we pray for her as "(new mother's name) bat (her-father's-name)". This is according to the template of the Mi Sheberach "Prayer For Mother And Newborn Child (And Naming A Baby Girl)" (ibid).

What's up with that?


1 Answer 1


When we say the Mi Sheberach for the newborn we are not praying in that same Mi Sheberach for a sick mother. Only when we pray for a sick person then do you say bas/ben the mother's name. Compare them in Hebrew at מי_שבירך.pdf.

However, HaRav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal in Igros Moshe (Orach Chaim 4:67) says that the published Nusach is wrong and recommends a different Nusach which does include a prayer for the sick mother and therefore says you should mention bas the mother's name.

The reason we say the mother's name when we pray for someone who is sick is answered over here. Prayer for Illness - Why use the mothers name?

  • Okay, but that doesn't really answer the question. Granted it's not the same tefillah (according to the olam, not R' Moshe), but why is the mother's name reserved only for davening for the sick?
    – Alex
    Commented Nov 30, 2011 at 19:28
  • 1
    The question was not why is the mother's name reserved only when you Daven for the sick, it was why in the Mi Sheberach for a Yoledes do we not say bas the mother's name, which this answers - since it is not a Mi Sheberach for the sick - as you can see from the Nusach. Commented Nov 30, 2011 at 19:32

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