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The sandek is the person who holds the baby when the mohel makes the bris. Generally this honor is given to a grandparent or very righteous person. In many cases when preparing the baby to perform the milah the mohel will help the sandek where is best to place his hands, hold the baby, knees, feet, etc. Generally the sandek has to hold the babies legs so they shouldn't move. The question was asked if the sandek for whatever reason is unable to do this, may someone else hold the babies feet and still have it considered to be that the "real" sandek is holding the baby? Does it make a difference if someone must assist in this matter.

(The question was raised and I have no reason to believe that it should be an "issue" but you never know...)

  • If by "I have no reason to believe that it should be an issue" you mean that the body of Jewish literature does not discuss it, then this question is pretty much unanswerable. – mevaqesh Aug 23 '15 at 21:16
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    @mevaqesh this is always an issue on this website. If I knew there might be an answer then I would say so or look somewhere else. There is a question on this site about the mother of the child being the sandek(et) which is something I would also say "I don't see why she should be able to, but yet I'm still asking..." And over there we see there are MANY sources about it, even though I would have no reason to believe why it would be okay. So to here. – Yehoshua Aug 23 '15 at 21:39
  • Why would you think a mother can't be a sandeket? Why do you think there is any status of the "real" sandek? What does it mean to be the "real" sandek? It's just a Minhag. If two people help hold the baby, so they both helped and get schar for helping. Anyone who helps with a Mitzva is rewarded. There are no rules. – Double AA Aug 23 '15 at 23:46
  • AT my son's bris, my father in law was the sandak. The mohel asked me "Does he shake?" (i.e. from Parkinsons or similar condition.) I said, "No." The mohel said, "OK, I trust you on this. But if he does shake, I may have to get someone else at the last minute, or I am y ask you to assist holding the baby's legs apart and steady, otherwise, I can't do my job." Apparently, he had no problem with an assistant, and, if needed required it. – DanF Aug 24 '15 at 1:36
  • @DoubleAA re "Why do you think there is any status of the 'real' sandek?": There is such: he skips tachanun and IIRC doesn't fast on a fast day – msh210 Aug 24 '15 at 3:52

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