I heard many times that a Cohen if obligated to bless once he is asked to.

(That this is the reason the shliach tzibur says (calls) "kohamin" before birchas kohamin)

Is this is true?

If yes what is the source of this?

(I asked a Kohen to bless me, he did not want to so I asked him do you not have to if I asked you to, he said no, so I am looking for the source to show him, thank you)

Similar Can you/should you be blessed by an ignorant/non-orthodox Kohen?

  • 1
    I don't remember the source but I do remember that it is learned out of the posukim. A kohen does have to bless a yosroel if asked but the obligation is only once a day. I heard ha in a shiur after shacharis once during a daily dvar halachah. Commented Jul 19, 2015 at 2:14
  • @jedipythonclone this is what I am looking for
    – hazoriz
    Commented Jul 19, 2015 at 2:15

1 Answer 1


Possibly this is a (mistaken) extension of the idea that once summoned for birkath kohanim in the synagogue service, a Kohen who declines to perform the blessing is in violation of the positive commandment to bless the people:

Shulchan Aruch 128:2

Any Kohain to whom one of the inhibiting factors does not apply who does not go up to the duchan, even though he has annulled one positive commandment, it is as if he has annulled three if it was when, in the Beit Hakeneset, they called, "Kohanim," said to go up, or told them to wash their hands.

See also Biur Halacha 128:4 which is cited by Halachipedia as:

If a Cohen is in shul and isn’t called up to do the Birkat Cohanim, strictly he isn’t obligated to do Birkat Cohanim (certainly, it’s appropriate and correct to do so) however, once a Cohen is asked to do Birkat Cohanim he violates the biblical command by refusing.

(Bear in mind that, as the Shulchan Aruch lays out in the very first halacha of Siman 128, Birchat Kohanim is only ever possible in a minyan.)

  • If I ask the Kohen to bless 10 people he will be obligated
    – hazoriz
    Commented Jul 23, 2015 at 2:51
  • @hazoriz Perhaps if you are their appointed shliach (tzibbur)... I doubt you can walk up to a Cohen in the street, point out 10 passersby and order, "Bless them!"
    – Loewian
    Commented Jul 23, 2015 at 18:57

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