Why is the Eastern Ashkenazi minhag in Chutz Laaretz to only do Birkat Kohanim at Mussaf of Yom Tov and not at shacharit or neila on Yom Kuppur? Presumably if it is a time that we feel is worthy of having the simcha required to do Birkat Kohanim that would apply to the entire day.

  • Note that it's done at Shacharis of Simchas Torah. I would venture to guess it's related to the Avodah.
    – DonielF
    Apr 7, 2017 at 17:37
  • in some communities it is done at Mussaf on Simchat Torah and not at shacharit and they just tell the cohanim not to drink wine. Apr 8, 2017 at 20:40
  • +1 for specifying that this isn't the Western Ashkenazi minhag! Apr 9, 2017 at 4:31
  • yeah I was just going to say the ashkenazi minhag of chul and then I remembered that western ashkenazim have a different minhag regarding Birkat Kohanim Apr 9, 2017 at 6:03

1 Answer 1


See RM Issarles on SA OC 128, 44:

נהגו בכל מדינות אלו שאין נושאים כפים אלא ביום טוב משום שאז שרויים בשמחת יום טוב וטוב לב הוא יברך מה שאין כן בשאר ימים אפילו בשבתות השנה שטרודים בהרהורים על מחייתם ועל ביטול מלאכתם ואפילו ביום טוב אין נושאין כפים אלא בתפלת מוסף שיוצאים אז מבית הכנסת וישמחו בשמחת יום טוב (דברי עצמו).

On Yom Tov, the time of musaf is the time before the end of the prayer, people are full of the joy of Yom Tov as they go home for the festival meal.

וכל שחרית ומוסף שאין נושאין בו כפים אומר השליח ציבור אלהינו ואלהי אבותינו וכו' כדלעיל סוף סימן קכ"ו. ‏

ויום הכפורים נושאים בו כפים כמו ביום טוב ויש מקומות שנושאים בו כפים בנעילה ויש מקומות אפילו בשחרית:‏

For Yom Hakkipurim, there are three different customs, the first to bless birkat kohanim in musaf only as for Yom Tov, to add BK in neila too, to add BK even in shacharit. Mishna Berura sk 126 writes that for Yom Hakkipurim we feel happyness because of forgiving.

According to the explanation of the Mishna Berura, you ask for shacharit, and Mincha and Meyla of Yom Kippur, why some people bless BK in Musaf only? Regarding Mincha, in siman 129 sayf 1, the SA explains that chachomim cancelled BK from all prayers because of most days (in which kohanim may be drunk). For Shacharit, may be because of Yom Tov. For neila The Baer Heytev sk 1 writes to be careful to skip the BK if the Neila falls at night.

So, for neila of YH, to skip BK may be because sometimes Neila falls at night for mincha because of most days, for shacharit I did not find explanation, but may be because of Yamim Tovim in which people is generally still not happy (perhaps).

  • I was asking regarding why on shacharit of yom tov and neila of yom hakippurim as well. I know it is not done at mincha anywhere due to the chashash that the kohanim are drunk. Apr 8, 2017 at 20:10
  • @yosef well now you've learned to be more careful when writing questions to be clear what you already know and what you seek to know.
    – Double AA
    Apr 9, 2017 at 0:44
  • @YosefMordechaiColeman but I addressed both
    – kouty
    Apr 9, 2017 at 7:43

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