Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayyim 135:8 says that during Torah reading, if there is a Cohen present but no Levi, the Cohen gets the first two aliyot.

Let's say that on a Monday or Thursday, when there are only 3 aliyot, two Yisra'elim need to be honored - e.g. a Bar Mitzvah boy and an aufruf. (See explanation, below.) Can the Cohen forgo receiving the Levi aliyah and can that be given to a Yisra'el?

(I have not used chatan or sandak since there is an opinion mentioned in OC stating that for these two people, you may be able to add a 4th aliyah even on a weekday.)


In my shul, congregants get easily offended if you don't give them an aliyah on a special occasion. In this scenario, there is a Bar Mitzvah and aufruf on a Monday. The Cohen is the Bar Mitzvah boy's grandpa. If we don't give aliyot to each of the other two, they would be so offended, that we could lose these regular "minyanaires". It is difficult to get subs. Thus, they need to get these aliyot.

  • 2
    Need to be honored?
    – Scimonster
    Apr 22, 2015 at 20:05
  • Have the kohen leave
    – Double AA
    Apr 22, 2015 at 23:22
  • @DoubleAA - See the explanation, above. The Cohen is one of the honorees who must also get an aliyah.
    – DanF
    Apr 23, 2015 at 0:57
  • 1
    Ah. Honestly, it sounds more like your congregants need to get over themselves.
    – Double AA
    Apr 23, 2015 at 1:07
  • 1
    If you can get enough people together for the event, make two Torah readings.
    – Yishai
    Apr 23, 2015 at 18:21

1 Answer 1


הלכה - דיני קריאת התורה by Rabbi Naftali Hoffner says that after a Kohain gets an Aliya, if there is no Levi, the same Kohain must get the next Aliya. He bases this on Mishna Berura 135:28.

What is done in my Shul when 2 people who are both Yisraelim need an Aliya is that one receives Hagba instead. The Rabbi himself took Hagba in such a situation and thus no one is insulted if that is what they receive.

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