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In today's day and age with COVID, many synagogues are streamlining the process for safety reasons. One of the things is to have the same person who opens the Aron, take out the Torah and then close the Aron. Would it be a lack in כבוד התורה, honor to the Torah, to while holding the Torah do another activity like closing the Aron?

Would it matter if there are other Torahs in the Aron or not?

Obviously health takes precedence. However, someone asked me the question.

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  • There is a problem of mitsvot chavilos of the same person taking two toros out with a long MGA and maharam shik. Doesnt he close the aron after giving the tora to the chazan. And when there is two toros the one who opens it should close it.
    – interested
    Dec 8 '20 at 8:42
  • Is this a change from regular procedure? I'm confused
    – Double AA
    Dec 9 '20 at 0:13
  • @DoubleAA It is a change from regular procedure. In regular procedure usually you have a person take out the Torah and hand it to the Chazan or someone else to bring the Torah to the Bimah. After the Torah is out of their hands (and in the Chazans) they will close the Aron. During Covid, the Shul wanted only one person to open, take the Torah, carry the Torah and put it on the Bimah. So, they questioner was asking if it would be a Bizuy to the Torah to while holding it, do another activity of closing the Aaron.
    – RCW
    Dec 11 '20 at 2:35
  • @RCW is that really the regular procedure? How do you know? Sometimes people do different things.
    – Double AA
    Dec 11 '20 at 2:37
  • @DoubleAA Let me be specific. That is the regular procedure of the person's shul that asked me the question. Additionally, maybe it is a lack in Kavod Hatorah, or even bizuy mitzvah to engage in another activity while holding the Torah. If I would mow the lawn while holding the Torah, maybe it would be Bizuy. I am just not sure.
    – RCW
    Dec 11 '20 at 6:13
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If the Chazzan is right by the Aron, then he can first hand the Torah to the Chazzan, and then close the Aron [as someone commented]. And if the Chazzan is not right by the Aron, then as soon as the one holding the Torah is 6 feet away from the Aron, - on his way to the Chazzan, someone else can come close the Aron.

But as to your actual question, even before COVID, it was very common for the one taking out the Torah to close the Aron and then hand the Torah to the Chazzan. It was even common in most places that for non-special Torah readings [eg. Monday & Thursday] the Chazzan himself did everything.

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  • Alternatively, just have the baal kriyah take out the Torah, carry it, and put it back. Why pass it at all?
    – Double AA
    Dec 9 '20 at 0:15
  • @kehas Wouldn't the person first pass the Torah and then close the Aron?
    – RCW
    Dec 11 '20 at 2:36

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