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At seudah shlishis at shul, this week, the person leading the bentching (grace after meals) neglected to say the word "Elokeinu" (our God), in the invitation to bentch ("zimmun"), as is required when ten men bentch together.

What happened was that everyone else responded with "Elokeinu," and the mezamen (person leading the bentching) was waved on, told to continue from that point on.

What should have happened? Should the other people have responded, or should they have waited for him to correct himself? Once the others answered, should the mezamen have continued from that point on, or should he have gone back to the line in which he skipped "Elokeinu"?

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The Shulchan Arukh (OC 192:2) rules that if the leader forgot to add Eloheinu and the others had yet to respond, then he should go back and say it again with Eloheinu. If they recited the entire Zimmun without Eloheinu they do not repeat the Zimmun.

The Baeir Heitev (ibid. sk 5) notes that if the gathered responded with Eloheinu then the leader should respond back with Eloheinu and it is sufficient as everyone has now said Eloheinu.

The Shaarei Teshuva (ibid. sk 5) notes a disagreement between later authorities if the leader may respond with Eloheinu should the gathered have also forgotten to add Eloheinu. The Mishna Berura (ibid. sk 10) cites this without ruling on the matter. CYLOR.

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