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Jerusalem - Rav Ovadya Yosef: A Woman Can Recite Kaddish for Parents in a Minyan at Home

Published on: February 1, 2010 10:57 AM
By: VIN News By Ezra Reichman
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File photo by Abir Sultan / Flash 90 File photo by Abir Sultan / Flash 90

Jerusalem - Rav Ovadya Yosef has issued a trail-blazing if not original psak permitting a woman to recite Kaddish over her parents in a minyan at home.  The psak is likely to arouse the chareidi rabbinical establishment against him.

The psak was revealed today by Maariv reporter for chareidi affairs Avishai Ben Chaim. Rav Yosef’s psak was publicized on the Halacha Yomit web site run by Rav Ovadya’s grandson which cites a daily halacha from Rav Ovadya’s psakim.

The question which Rav Ovadya was asked to answer involved a woman who had no brothers to recite Kaddish for her parents. After bringing relevant halacha authorities, R av Ovadya stated that the woman could not recite Kaddish in front of ten women – since Kaddish may not be recited without a minyan—but could recite it in front of ten men after prayers or Divrei Torah were said.

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Despite Rav Ovadya’s reservations not permitting a woman status in a minyan or in shul, the psak din is nevertheless likely to be heralded by women’s groups like Women of the Wall who have set as their goal breaching timeworn halachic limitations on women’s participation in public prayer and achieving recognition for their innovations.

Rav Ovadya referred to such women’s groups recently as “wicked women and reformers who are doing what they can to tear down Judaism… as if they fulfill all the mitzvos and the only thing they are missing is a tallis.”

Similar psakim that weakened the barriers against reformist innovations were responded to with scathing attacks in the Hebrew-language Yated Neeman. Until now, the Yated Neeman has refrained from openly attacking Rav Ovadya on other psakim that raised the ire of its leaders. Will this change now in the wake of this far-reaching liberal psak?

An excerpt of the psak printed on the Halacha Yomit  web site:

“One of the great Achronim, the Shvus Yaakov, spoke about this matter in his sefer. He writes that reciting Kaddish is relevant to women, especially since saying Kaddish brings a great benefit to the souls of the parents. However, he writes that girls should not be allowed to say Kaddish in shul, but only in a gathering of a minyan of men in their homes, when Divrei Torah is recited or prayers are held, after which one may recite Kaddish l’ilui nishmas their father.

“The gaon and author of the Sefer Tshuva M’Ahava, writes that in Amsterdam a case occurred in which a man died without sons, and the daughters recited Kaddish (the implication is that they recited Kaddish in shul). The sages in town did not prevent it and the Chavas Yair (the gaon Rav Yair Bachrach) wrote in his tshuvos that indeed Kaddish is relevant to women too, and it seems that her saying Kaddish brings benefit and nachas ruach to her father’s soul, because she is his progeny. Nevertheless he writes that this minhag of letting a girl say Kaddish should not be permitted since it is an innovation which will introduce further breaches, as we see happened with the early reformers. They began with changes that opposed the principles of Judaism, and in the end, they totally uprooted major laws of Judaism… He nevertheless ends his words saying that he saw a nice custom in the holy community of Prague in which elderly men and women gather in the Ezras Noshim to say Tehilim after shacharis, and after finishing the entire Tehilim, orphan girls would say Kaddish. But such a thing should not be carried out in a shul designated for prayer.

“In conclusion, the Tshuva M’Ahava says that while reciting Kaddish should not be allowed in shul, in another place like a home, or in the Ezras Noshim, etc. girls whose parents did not leave behind sons may be allowed to recite Kaddish”


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Read Comments (81)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:14 AM looking to verify story Says:

story goes that in munkach a girl was orphaned without brothers

she went to shull every AM - sat in back of mens section - and said kaddish at end of davening

chidush is that there was no mochoah by the rabbonim

apparently that hanhagah was not so unusual

can anybody very this story ??

2

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:17 AM Just Thinking Says:

Thank God we have a real leader, who is not scared to say the truth as it is

3

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:17 AM Charlie Hall Says:

This is precisely the 400 year old case from Amsterdam that I referred to in a comment last week. How can it be possible to criticize the leading Sefardic posek in the world for following the Sefardic psak from 400 years ago?

In Ashkenazic communities, the custom of women saying kaddish may be somewhat newer, but Rav Soloveitchik reported that he heard women saying kaddish in the shul of his grandfather Rav Chaim of Brisk, and modern orthodox synagogues (at least in America) universally follow Rav Soloveitchik here. I personally heard two women saying kaddish for their mother's yahretzeits in shul this morning.

Can the Yated seriously say that Rav Chaim or the Sefardic rabbis of Amsterdam were "weakening the barriers"? Remember it was the Sefardic rabbis of Amsterdam who put Spinoza in cherem!

4

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:24 AM Schmendrik Says:

Rav Chaim Kreiswirth zt"l told me that in Poland the women routinely said kaddish from behind the mechitzah, but only together with men saying kaddish. I did not ask him if they could say it in shul with if no men were saying kaddish.

5

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:24 AM Anonymous Says:

Look in Migdal Oiz from R' Yaakov Emden about a woman having an aliyah after having a child (holeches)

6

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:26 AM vrumvrum Says:

Not that the rov needs my approval but it is in line with the minhag of a woman saying birchas hagoimel in shul after a baby.

7

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:27 AM yossi UK Says:

"other psakim that raised the ire of its leaders" Can anyone enlighten me on which other psakim the article refers to? Also is it true that in years gone by Rav Ovadya Yosef Shlit"a challenged the Chazon Ish Shlit"a & controversey has raged ever since!!?

8

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:30 AM Eddie Says:

Charlie where does the yated come in here?

9

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:34 AM Loshon Hora Says:

He nevertheless ends his words saying that he saw a nice custom in the holy community of Prague in which elderly men and women gather in the Ezras Noshim to say Tehilim after shacharis, and after finishing the entire Tehilim, orphan girls would say Kaddish. But such a thing should not be carried out in a shul designated for prayer.
I heard the Chofetz Chaim's daughters said Kadish in the Ezras Noshim, & he had a son.
Is it true?

10

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:34 AM Fred Says:

Personally, I find the "weakening the barriers" argument obscene and juvenille. Either its mutar or its not. This sort of "man the barricades!" argument can be used to keep women out of public life altogether. (Yeah, I can hear many of you saying "Amen"...You lose me here)

11

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:37 AM berel Says:

Reply to #2  
Just Thinking Says:

Thank God we have a real leader, who is not scared to say the truth as it is

so you big goen knows the truth , and just waited a goen to come and support your truth. and what are your credentials? where did you dwelve into the sea of talmud and S"U ? how did you get to this truth from the femmenist movement, or did you come to this truth by dwelving int the yam hatalmud and came to your conclusion?

12

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:40 AM Anonymous Says:

I had a great great grandfather a rov and friend of the Sanzer Rov the Divrei Chaim, when he was niftar he left 3 daughters. They asked the Sanzer Rov who should say Kaddish after their father, so he answered that each of them were worthy of saying kaddish but he doesn't want to stir a commotion in the world so they should hire someone to say Kaddish.

13

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:45 AM berel Says:

Reply to #3  
Charlie Hall Says:

This is precisely the 400 year old case from Amsterdam that I referred to in a comment last week. How can it be possible to criticize the leading Sefardic posek in the world for following the Sefardic psak from 400 years ago?

In Ashkenazic communities, the custom of women saying kaddish may be somewhat newer, but Rav Soloveitchik reported that he heard women saying kaddish in the shul of his grandfather Rav Chaim of Brisk, and modern orthodox synagogues (at least in America) universally follow Rav Soloveitchik here. I personally heard two women saying kaddish for their mother's yahretzeits in shul this morning.

Can the Yated seriously say that Rav Chaim or the Sefardic rabbis of Amsterdam were "weakening the barriers"? Remember it was the Sefardic rabbis of Amsterdam who put Spinoza in cherem!

no, you did not say that, you said 'have been saying kaddish 400 hundred years' which is not the case. here your saying, your reffering to a psak that was passed 400 years ago' which is 2 different things.and this psak was not adhered to . anyway you dont want to go kahalacha, you want to be in saync with your 'MO and down' world that wants to 'kechol hagoyim huyinu' just where you can you qoute psakim from poskai hador that suits you, not that care anything of these gelai oilom psaks.

14

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:46 AM Anonymous Says:

If it is ok for a woman to say kaddish with a minyan what is the difference where the minyan is? And how oftenw ill a woman find a minyan at home or not in a shul (except maybe on the side of the Thruway)? In essensnce he is saying it is ok for a woman to say kaddish with minyan but since she shouldn't do it in shul she will almost never have the opprotunity to say kaddish. So what good is this?

15

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:46 AM yank Says:

Reply to #6  
vrumvrum Says:

Not that the rov needs my approval but it is in line with the minhag of a woman saying birchas hagoimel in shul after a baby.

and where is the mihug a lady says 'hagomel' in shul , also MO?

16

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:55 AM Anonymous Says:

The rav is simply acknowledging reality. Thousands of yiddeshe women say kadish with minyanim, with and without a mechitza, and would have continued to do so with our without his paskin. Its good that many who might have been reluctant to do so will now feel its ok.

17

 Feb 01, 2010 at 11:55 AM Shlomo Radomska Says:

I believe Rav Henkin addressed this issue in the 1930s in America as a Teshuva in his era and allowed women to say kaddish in shul quietly as long as a minyan of men existed.

18

 Feb 01, 2010 at 12:05 PM Fred Says:

Reply to #5  
Anonymous Says:

Look in Migdal Oiz from R' Yaakov Emden about a woman having an aliyah after having a child (holeches)

Can you please give a more specific citation? Thanks.

19

 Feb 01, 2010 at 12:05 PM Anonymous Says:

Ok. Here is another example of throwing people off. Did you notice the picture? Does it strike you odd? Did you jump back for a second? well I did, all the women kissing the Sefer Torah, Unusuall huh? well that may be true. HOWEVER, the Rav's psak has got nothing to do with the picture in fact he specifically stated that a women MAY NOT recite kadish in the presence of ten women but, rather requires ten MEN. Funny thought that in this picture there is NINE WOMEN and ONE MAN. Pictures.........how much they can throw us off. Beware!!

20

 Feb 01, 2010 at 12:06 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #2  
Just Thinking Says:

Thank God we have a real leader, who is not scared to say the truth as it is

Sir, we've had them for thousands of years.

21

 Feb 01, 2010 at 12:16 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
looking to verify story Says:

story goes that in munkach a girl was orphaned without brothers

she went to shull every AM - sat in back of mens section - and said kaddish at end of davening

chidush is that there was no mochoah by the rabbonim

apparently that hanhagah was not so unusual

can anybody very this story ??

See Rav Moshe Feinstein's, zt"l teshuva on this subject (Iggeros Moshe). He also says that this was the practice in Europe in his location. See also Rav Yosef E. Henkin's, zt"l teshuva who permitted women to say kaddish.

This is nothing new. The uproar, however, is new. Or at least those who want to hetz others into making an issue over this.

Our Gedolim in their wisdom and sensitivity to the bereaved paskened as they saw fit. We need to learn from their approach even if our initial reaction is one of trepidation. Since when is it proper to publicly chastise Gedolei Haposkim because some people don't like what they have to say? What happened to boshes punim?

22

 Feb 01, 2010 at 12:19 PM Anonymous Says:

Rav Goloventzitz told me, twenty years ago, during the shiva for his wife, that his wife when she was a young girl was told to say Kadish in the back of the shul for one (or both) of her parents. The Gadol who gave this Psak, was, if I remember correctly, Rav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld Z'TL. His wife was a very young girl at the time, and there are likely different tznius considerations than for an adult woman saying Kadish, but I am not sure this is so groundbreaking. One thing I am sure of is that I am not in a position to assess the Psokim of Gedolim.

23

 Feb 01, 2010 at 12:20 PM frum but normal Says:

it seems that harav Ovadia Joseph is one of the few gedolim of this generation
who is proficient not only in the four shilchan aruchs but also in the fifth one,
our generation could use some more gedolim like this

24

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:07 PM Anonymous Says:

why did Moron Hagaon Harav Shlita wait till the age of 90 to hand so
a revolutionaty Psak which no Posek dared in the last 200 years? I stress 200 years.
I am sure the Rav was asked this Shaale tens of times during his Rabinical career and abstained from replying. I even heard that he did not want to reply if a woman should or can learn Mishnayes Leiluy Nishomo of her father.The stories of the Divrei Chaim, Munkacz, Rab Chaim and the Chofetz Chaim etc. are not Halacha, only stories. Maisalach are not Halacha.

The Pritzus and reforms of our generation cannot compare and afford some Psakim of the Shvus Yakov or Tshuva Meahava that were
acceptable only in places like Prague or Hoiroas Shah.

All above was heard from my Posek Hagaon Shlita.

25

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:08 PM Anonymous Says:

i dont get it Everyones bringing a bunch of p'sokim as if there are those that say its ASUR L'HALACHA. Read the article. All it is is speculation (and dare i say hoping) that the yated and all the "fanaticle" gedolim are gonna rip r' ovadiya. The yated just rips the feminist movment and their agenda as does r' ovadya by calling them evil women

26

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:20 PM Dovid Says:

Once again the VIN readers and writer want to thow away halacha for another chumra. We are no longer living life al pi halacha, but only making chumras, which become at a certain point, ridiculous.

27

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:32 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #24  
Anonymous Says:

why did Moron Hagaon Harav Shlita wait till the age of 90 to hand so
a revolutionaty Psak which no Posek dared in the last 200 years? I stress 200 years.
I am sure the Rav was asked this Shaale tens of times during his Rabinical career and abstained from replying. I even heard that he did not want to reply if a woman should or can learn Mishnayes Leiluy Nishomo of her father.The stories of the Divrei Chaim, Munkacz, Rab Chaim and the Chofetz Chaim etc. are not Halacha, only stories. Maisalach are not Halacha.

The Pritzus and reforms of our generation cannot compare and afford some Psakim of the Shvus Yakov or Tshuva Meahava that were
acceptable only in places like Prague or Hoiroas Shah.

All above was heard from my Posek Hagaon Shlita.

You are correct in not revealing the name of your Posek, because if that is really what he said, he could well be branded an apikoirus - in hasidic circles definitely, and I'm sure in many orthodox litvish ones as well. According to his 'logic' the Maaseh Rav' from Vilna Gaon is also not halacha.

28

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:35 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #6  
vrumvrum Says:

Not that the rov needs my approval but it is in line with the minhag of a woman saying birchas hagoimel in shul after a baby.

i don t disagree with thegaon hacham ovadia s psak however in your situation gomel is not davar shebikdusha kadish is

29

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:37 PM Fred Says:

Reply to #25  
Anonymous Says:

i dont get it Everyones bringing a bunch of p'sokim as if there are those that say its ASUR L'HALACHA. Read the article. All it is is speculation (and dare i say hoping) that the yated and all the "fanaticle" gedolim are gonna rip r' ovadiya. The yated just rips the feminist movment and their agenda as does r' ovadya by calling them evil women

Yep. Nothing like good name calling....

30

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:37 PM Anonymous Says:

There's a great book on the Holocaust called Vanquish the Dragon (based on several Talmidos of Sarah Schnirer) where its mentioned several times that the girls said kaddish - I always wondered at that, now I see the minhag has a mekor & obviously got nothing to do with just Sefardishe minhagim .........

31

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:42 PM berel Says:

Reply to #23  
frum but normal Says:

it seems that harav Ovadia Joseph is one of the few gedolim of this generation
who is proficient not only in the four shilchan aruchs but also in the fifth one,
our generation could use some more gedolim like this

there are plenty, your just excited with this psak so all of asuden your his chasid and the other poskim are not 'proficient ' in the 5th shulchen aurech

32

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:48 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #24  
Anonymous Says:

why did Moron Hagaon Harav Shlita wait till the age of 90 to hand so
a revolutionaty Psak which no Posek dared in the last 200 years? I stress 200 years.
I am sure the Rav was asked this Shaale tens of times during his Rabinical career and abstained from replying. I even heard that he did not want to reply if a woman should or can learn Mishnayes Leiluy Nishomo of her father.The stories of the Divrei Chaim, Munkacz, Rab Chaim and the Chofetz Chaim etc. are not Halacha, only stories. Maisalach are not Halacha.

The Pritzus and reforms of our generation cannot compare and afford some Psakim of the Shvus Yakov or Tshuva Meahava that were
acceptable only in places like Prague or Hoiroas Shah.

All above was heard from my Posek Hagaon Shlita.

i m sure your rov is a poisrk otzum but he should be identified ,,bring his goods and argue with harav ovadia shlita the psak goes back more than 400 years

33

 Feb 01, 2010 at 01:58 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #24  
Anonymous Says:

why did Moron Hagaon Harav Shlita wait till the age of 90 to hand so
a revolutionaty Psak which no Posek dared in the last 200 years? I stress 200 years.
I am sure the Rav was asked this Shaale tens of times during his Rabinical career and abstained from replying. I even heard that he did not want to reply if a woman should or can learn Mishnayes Leiluy Nishomo of her father.The stories of the Divrei Chaim, Munkacz, Rab Chaim and the Chofetz Chaim etc. are not Halacha, only stories. Maisalach are not Halacha.

The Pritzus and reforms of our generation cannot compare and afford some Psakim of the Shvus Yakov or Tshuva Meahava that were
acceptable only in places like Prague or Hoiroas Shah.

All above was heard from my Posek Hagaon Shlita.

Uh, you must not have read the comments. A lot of great rabbis have been cited who have permitted women to say kaddish even in a synagogue, and some actually put it in writing such as Rav Moshe z'tz'l. (Others such as Rav Soloveitchik z'tz'l never published their halachic positions but we know very well what they held.)

34

 Feb 01, 2010 at 02:23 PM Anonymous Says:

Tora has a Mesoroh and every new or forgotten Minhag that is being
established reestablished needs atleast a Minyan Rabanim in the calibre of Harav Ovadia. Take the new Kinos for Tisha Baav that has not raken hold
Chodosh Osur Min Hatora.

35

 Feb 01, 2010 at 02:37 PM PulpitRabbi Says:

Reply to #15  
yank Says:

and where is the mihug a lady says 'hagomel' in shul , also MO?

R' Shloime Zalman wrote approvingly that women should bentch hagoimel. I saw how R' Dovid amassed a minyan for a woman to say kaddish.

36

 Feb 01, 2010 at 02:53 PM Anonymous Says:

reply to #30
The book refers to saying Kaddish between women only, of-course. Also in the litvishe seminaries (Gateshead Sem) the girls wil bentch with "mezuman" too. Guess you never heard about this either .....

37

 Feb 01, 2010 at 02:53 PM #25's reply to fred Says:

Im not suse i get the sarcasim of your reply. i wasnt name calling, just quoting the article- although your right the Rav didn't call them evil, he called them wicked.

38

 Feb 01, 2010 at 03:20 PM Rivka Says:

This is a disaster - next women will want to sit at the grown up table at shabbos meals.

39

 Feb 01, 2010 at 03:22 PM Gregaaron Says:

Reply to #29  
Fred Says:

Yep. Nothing like good name calling....

When a group of people poses a danger to the mesorah that we have lived by for thousands of years, yes - it is proper to call them evil people. "U'viarta hara'ah mikirbecha" - obviously, our goal is to have as many people be close to authentic yiddishkeit as possible, but when there is the possibility that others may be affected by anti-Torah hashkafos, we have to do all in our power to rid such movements from our midst. Even if it's politically incorrect.

As Moshe Rabbeinu said, "Mi l'hashem eilai?"

40

 Feb 01, 2010 at 03:42 PM Anonymous Says:

Many gadolim of prior generations have said it is not only mutar but encouraged for women to say kadish, blow shofar or do other mitzvot that serve as a kiddush hashem as long as they comply with halacha regarding mechitza, tzinius etc. I'm not sure why a woman saying kadish in the presence of a kosher minyan in ezras nashim has become such a big deal except for a few rabbonim who decided on their own to deviate from hundreds of years of minhagim.

41

 Feb 01, 2010 at 03:44 PM Just Thinking Says:

Reply to #11  
berel Says:

so you big goen knows the truth , and just waited a goen to come and support your truth. and what are your credentials? where did you dwelve into the sea of talmud and S"U ? how did you get to this truth from the femmenist movement, or did you come to this truth by dwelving int the yam hatalmud and came to your conclusion?

It is what he thinks is the truth and he proved himself well. I will keep my credentials to myself for now.

42

 Feb 01, 2010 at 03:57 PM BHB Says:

Reply to #12  
Anonymous Says:

I had a great great grandfather a rov and friend of the Sanzer Rov the Divrei Chaim, when he was niftar he left 3 daughters. They asked the Sanzer Rov who should say Kaddish after their father, so he answered that each of them were worthy of saying kaddish but he doesn't want to stir a commotion in the world so they should hire someone to say Kaddish.

I didn't know someone needed to be "worthy" of saying Kaddish. After all we do let 5 year old boys and non-frum men say Kaddish. So what's with the worthy? This sounds just like a sound-bite that makes no sense.

43

 Feb 01, 2010 at 04:50 PM Yaavatz quoter Says:

Reply to #18  
Fred Says:

Can you please give a more specific citation? Thanks.

Nachal 13, Shokas 2, s'eef kotton 10.
It is on page 24 of Zhitomir edition - printed there 5634 and reprinted (identical copy, probably photo-litho) in Yerusholayim 5729

44

 Feb 01, 2010 at 04:51 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #15  
yank Says:

and where is the mihug a lady says 'hagomel' in shul , also MO?

No. Reb Yaakov Emden.

45

 Feb 01, 2010 at 04:56 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #25  
Anonymous Says:

i dont get it Everyones bringing a bunch of p'sokim as if there are those that say its ASUR L'HALACHA. Read the article. All it is is speculation (and dare i say hoping) that the yated and all the "fanaticle" gedolim are gonna rip r' ovadiya. The yated just rips the feminist movment and their agenda as does r' ovadya by calling them evil women

Please don't compare R' Ovadia to the feminist movement. The first is an undisputed Godol BaTorah. That is not disputed even by his opponents. The second wear tallesim at the Kottel. 'Nuff said?

46

 Feb 01, 2010 at 05:02 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #39  
Gregaaron Says:

When a group of people poses a danger to the mesorah that we have lived by for thousands of years, yes - it is proper to call them evil people. "U'viarta hara'ah mikirbecha" - obviously, our goal is to have as many people be close to authentic yiddishkeit as possible, but when there is the possibility that others may be affected by anti-Torah hashkafos, we have to do all in our power to rid such movements from our midst. Even if it's politically incorrect.

As Moshe Rabbeinu said, "Mi l'hashem eilai?"

People who have a different religious outlook then you are not "evil". You may disagree with them, and think them mistaken, but they are not "evil". I would have no problem if the R' Yosef had called them only "in error" -- thats his right. But when name calling is invoked he demeans his argument. Its also counter productive. It simply gives them the opportunity to (justifiably) make fun of you. The name calling has to stop. Do you Chabad doing this? This crosses the line and no one -- on either side -- should do it.

47

 Feb 01, 2010 at 05:19 PM Anonymous Says:

They were Metakein Kadish for children!!. Is it possible that the Shvus Jaakov and the Tshuva Meahava etc. quoted by the Rav are permitting girls up to the age of 12 to say Kadish for 10 men in the ladies Shul and not grown females? In Prague 300 years back, Kadish was recited only by a different chosen Yosem for every other Kadish. There was no chance for two or more saying at the same time, always only one.

This Shale gave birth to many Amei Haaretz to voice their opinions on
vosizneias without taking into consideration that this a Shale for the
Gdolei and Poskey Hador and not for every tom dick and getzel that writes bits of English..

This Tshuva should not have been printed on the Internet.The next step is a referendum if women can or should be Oleh Ltora the Mordchai will be quoted just like the Tshuva Meahava.


48

 Feb 01, 2010 at 05:42 PM Fred Says:

Reply to #46  
Anonymous Says:

People who have a different religious outlook then you are not "evil". You may disagree with them, and think them mistaken, but they are not "evil". I would have no problem if the R' Yosef had called them only "in error" -- thats his right. But when name calling is invoked he demeans his argument. Its also counter productive. It simply gives them the opportunity to (justifiably) make fun of you. The name calling has to stop. Do you Chabad doing this? This crosses the line and no one -- on either side -- should do it.

Please forgive my sloppy English. Thats what happens when you forget to proof read. Let me try it again and clarify just a little...

People who have a different religious outlook then you are not "evil". You may disagree with them, and think them mistaken, but they are not "evil". I would have no problem if R' Yosef had called them only "in error" or "mistaken" -- thats his right. But when name calling is invoked he demeans his argument. It is also counter productive. It simply gives them the opportunity to (justifiably) make fun of him. The name calling has to stop. Do you see Chabad doing this? This crosses the line and no one -- on either side -- should do it. People who torture animals are evil. People who just see Judaism differently then you are not, even if you feel threatened by them. Recognizing this is part of growing up.

49

 Feb 01, 2010 at 05:48 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #45  
Anonymous Says:

Please don't compare R' Ovadia to the feminist movement. The first is an undisputed Godol BaTorah. That is not disputed even by his opponents. The second wear tallesim at the Kottel. 'Nuff said?

And where is it assur for a woman to wear a tallis?
Does your wife shake lulav? It is also a mitzvah shehazman grama!
The Kopzhnitzer Rebbe also used to have his wife and daughters light menorah. What a shock!!!!

50

 Feb 01, 2010 at 06:32 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #14  
Anonymous Says:

If it is ok for a woman to say kaddish with a minyan what is the difference where the minyan is? And how oftenw ill a woman find a minyan at home or not in a shul (except maybe on the side of the Thruway)? In essensnce he is saying it is ok for a woman to say kaddish with minyan but since she shouldn't do it in shul she will almost never have the opprotunity to say kaddish. So what good is this?

There is a halachic question as to whether the woman has the same obligation to recite the kaddish after the passing of a parent. There is am additional issue of kavod haTzibbur. For a woman "leading" part of a religous service. that is why in so many of the mentioned cases these problems were eliminated by either saying along with the men from the ezras noshim or creating a special environment (tihilim) in the ezras noshim so that they can say kaddish. HOWEVER, many of the woman to day want to have equal standing as men and bring proof from cases that actually would not have permitted the kaddish under their terms. as a side bar, woman according to the mordechai in a city entirely of kohanim can be given an alyah in place of a kohen. (os taf daled in gitten) do we want to paskin from that that a woman should get an alyah????

51

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:04 PM Anonymous Says:

Saying Kaddish after a beloved one is an emotional experience. This is true whether men ,women,young or old. Therefore , no amount of restrictions will ever succeed depriving anyone from reciting the mourners Kaddish..Millions of jews never had the zchus to have anyone say Kaddish after them..Think about that ! !

52

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:05 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #34  
Anonymous Says:

Tora has a Mesoroh and every new or forgotten Minhag that is being
established reestablished needs atleast a Minyan Rabanim in the calibre of Harav Ovadia. Take the new Kinos for Tisha Baav that has not raken hold
Chodosh Osur Min Hatora.

"Chodosh Osur Min Hatora" is not the halachah, just a polemic used against the Reformers. If it were the halachah, our siddur would be about 2/3 shorter! No tachanun, no selichot, no piyutim, no kabalat Shabat -- all post-Chazal innovations. As are yizkor, Simchat Torah, mourners saying kaddish in unison, sermons on Shabat morning....the list goes on and on.

53

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:06 PM Anonymous Says:

With this new found respect for women, does this mean that the Frenks will stop beating their wives? I certainly hope so!

54

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:07 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #36  
Anonymous Says:

reply to #30
The book refers to saying Kaddish between women only, of-course. Also in the litvishe seminaries (Gateshead Sem) the girls wil bentch with "mezuman" too. Guess you never heard about this either .....

The Rosh and the Vilna Gaon paskened that it was a chiyuv for three women to bentch with mezuman in the absence of three men. All other opinions hold that it is at least a reshut.

55

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:07 PM Anonymous Says:

I heard from a reliable source that in Radin women said Kaddish in the Ezras Noshim of the Chofetz Chaim's shul. I'm not sure if that was the general minhag or if it was a time of war and there were frequently no men relatives to say Kaddish.

56

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:11 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #50  
Anonymous Says:

There is a halachic question as to whether the woman has the same obligation to recite the kaddish after the passing of a parent. There is am additional issue of kavod haTzibbur. For a woman "leading" part of a religous service. that is why in so many of the mentioned cases these problems were eliminated by either saying along with the men from the ezras noshim or creating a special environment (tihilim) in the ezras noshim so that they can say kaddish. HOWEVER, many of the woman to day want to have equal standing as men and bring proof from cases that actually would not have permitted the kaddish under their terms. as a side bar, woman according to the mordechai in a city entirely of kohanim can be given an alyah in place of a kohen. (os taf daled in gitten) do we want to paskin from that that a woman should get an alyah????

Women clearly would not have a chiyuv of saying kaddish but it is clear that it is permitted.

The accepted halachah is that women do not get aliyot even in a city of kohanim; read recent halachic writings by Rabbis Y. H. Henkin, G. Rothstein, S. Riskin, and M. Broyde for the many sources.

57

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:12 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #49  
Anonymous Says:

And where is it assur for a woman to wear a tallis?
Does your wife shake lulav? It is also a mitzvah shehazman grama!
The Kopzhnitzer Rebbe also used to have his wife and daughters light menorah. What a shock!!!!

Women are equally chayev in menorah as men. My wife has lit for me at times.

There is no prohibition for a woman to wear tzitzit or shake lulav, and if the woman is Ashkenazic she would say a bracha before the mitzvah.

58

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:15 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #47  
Anonymous Says:

They were Metakein Kadish for children!!. Is it possible that the Shvus Jaakov and the Tshuva Meahava etc. quoted by the Rav are permitting girls up to the age of 12 to say Kadish for 10 men in the ladies Shul and not grown females? In Prague 300 years back, Kadish was recited only by a different chosen Yosem for every other Kadish. There was no chance for two or more saying at the same time, always only one.

This Shale gave birth to many Amei Haaretz to voice their opinions on
vosizneias without taking into consideration that this a Shale for the
Gdolei and Poskey Hador and not for every tom dick and getzel that writes bits of English..

This Tshuva should not have been printed on the Internet.The next step is a referendum if women can or should be Oleh Ltora the Mordchai will be quoted just like the Tshuva Meahava.


This is barely a shilah at all! Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities and it has received the support of some of the greatest poskim in the world as indicated by the many comments here. It is an interesting question as to how the minhag of having all mourners say kaddish in unison rather than have a single mourner say kaddish in shul has developed, but that is not the issue here.

59

 Feb 01, 2010 at 08:17 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #39  
Gregaaron Says:

When a group of people poses a danger to the mesorah that we have lived by for thousands of years, yes - it is proper to call them evil people. "U'viarta hara'ah mikirbecha" - obviously, our goal is to have as many people be close to authentic yiddishkeit as possible, but when there is the possibility that others may be affected by anti-Torah hashkafos, we have to do all in our power to rid such movements from our midst. Even if it's politically incorrect.

As Moshe Rabbeinu said, "Mi l'hashem eilai?"

There is no danger to any mesorah in women saying kaddish. Our religious practices have changed dramatically over the millenia. Most of our siddur is post-Chazal.

60

 Feb 01, 2010 at 09:41 PM Gregaaron Says:

Reply to #59  
Charlie Hall Says:

There is no danger to any mesorah in women saying kaddish. Our religious practices have changed dramatically over the millenia. Most of our siddur is post-Chazal.

Hi Charlie. I think he was referring to the Women of the Wall people with the "evil" epiphet...if I'm mistaken, I apologize.

61

 Feb 01, 2010 at 09:42 PM Gregaaron Says:

Reply to #58  
Charlie Hall Says:

This is barely a shilah at all! Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities and it has received the support of some of the greatest poskim in the world as indicated by the many comments here. It is an interesting question as to how the minhag of having all mourners say kaddish in unison rather than have a single mourner say kaddish in shul has developed, but that is not the issue here.

"Overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities"???? Somehow, I doubt that that's true...

62

 Feb 02, 2010 at 12:24 AM Moshe Y Says:

Reply to #49  
Anonymous Says:

And where is it assur for a woman to wear a tallis?
Does your wife shake lulav? It is also a mitzvah shehazman grama!
The Kopzhnitzer Rebbe also used to have his wife and daughters light menorah. What a shock!!!!

“ And where is it assur for a woman to wear a tallis?
The Rema writes that it is assur for a woman to wear a tallis b/c it is an act of arrogance, yuhara

63

 Feb 02, 2010 at 01:15 AM PMO Says:

Reply to #61  
Gregaaron Says:

"Overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities"???? Somehow, I doubt that that's true...

As someone who travels all over the east coast regularly, as well as internationally, I can tell you that in the overwhelming majority of orthodox communities (most being MO), women saying kaddish is 100% accepted. Reb Moshe zt"l was pretty clear in his position that it was acceptable for women to softly say kaddish along with men in a shul.

However, I have heard that there were different answers when there were no men saying kaddish (I could be wrong about this part, it was just something I had heard). Perhaps if someone knows a bit more about this topic they can expand on it, or refute it.

64

 Feb 02, 2010 at 01:56 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #49  
Anonymous Says:

And where is it assur for a woman to wear a tallis?
Does your wife shake lulav? It is also a mitzvah shehazman grama!
The Kopzhnitzer Rebbe also used to have his wife and daughters light menorah. What a shock!!!!

Does your wife shake the lulav? Does your wife wear a tallit in public?
And if you are a woman which of these do you do?

65

 Feb 02, 2010 at 02:18 AM Anonymous Says:

In Australia back in 1955/6s, the Rov at the time (SH"T Bezal Chochmah - Harav Betzalel Stern) permitted an only daughter to say Kaddish IN Shul for her parents who were killed in a plane crash.

66

 Feb 02, 2010 at 07:57 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #55  
Anonymous Says:

I heard from a reliable source that in Radin women said Kaddish in the Ezras Noshim of the Chofetz Chaim's shul. I'm not sure if that was the general minhag or if it was a time of war and there were frequently no men relatives to say Kaddish.

The Chofetz Chaim didn't have a shul.
He had a Yeshiva.

67

 Feb 02, 2010 at 10:52 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #64  
Anonymous Says:

Does your wife shake the lulav? Does your wife wear a tallit in public?
And if you are a woman which of these do you do?

Doing it in public would indeed be parutz geder and be an act of arrogance, however I keep it under my blouse and no one even my daughter knows about it.

It has nothing about being a strident feminist at all. I do not believe in the woman's teffilah or any public display.

68

 Feb 02, 2010 at 12:51 PM Anonymous Says:

The danger of this is that there is clearly an issur on women saying kaddish in Shul, as is rampant within the uneducated modern communities in NYC. This same wholesale rebellion (deciding that it is by extension okay for women to recite in Shul) is the reason that it continues to be prohibited for Ashkenazim today.

69

 Feb 02, 2010 at 02:33 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #58  
Charlie Hall Says:

This is barely a shilah at all! Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities and it has received the support of some of the greatest poskim in the world as indicated by the many comments here. It is an interesting question as to how the minhag of having all mourners say kaddish in unison rather than have a single mourner say kaddish in shul has developed, but that is not the issue here.

you MO communities ,which is a far cry from orhtodox

70

 Feb 02, 2010 at 02:03 PM Fred Says:

Reply to #68  
Anonymous Says:

The danger of this is that there is clearly an issur on women saying kaddish in Shul, as is rampant within the uneducated modern communities in NYC. This same wholesale rebellion (deciding that it is by extension okay for women to recite in Shul) is the reason that it continues to be prohibited for Ashkenazim today.

I'll bite, what exactly is the issur of women reciting Kaddish in shul? Loudly, even?
Just because you like women to be silent doesnt mean there is any kind of issur here. And "I dont like the political implications" does not an issur make. ..

71

 Feb 02, 2010 at 02:45 PM A.J. Says:

Reply to #28  
Anonymous Says:

i don t disagree with thegaon hacham ovadia s psak however in your situation gomel is not davar shebikdusha kadish is

I don't understand the fuss about women saying kadish.
My maternal grandmother was born in Kovno in the 1870s. She claimed is was the custom there for women who did not have the obligation of taking care of small children to say kaddish in shul.
After her husband (my grandfather) died she said kaddish in the nearest shul to our home. The shul was the Bostoner Rebbe's and he knew her son who was saying kaddish.

73

 Feb 02, 2010 at 04:21 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #55  
Anonymous Says:

I heard from a reliable source that in Radin women said Kaddish in the Ezras Noshim of the Chofetz Chaim's shul. I'm not sure if that was the general minhag or if it was a time of war and there were frequently no men relatives to say Kaddish.

the chofetz chaim didnt have a shul and was not the rov in radin so i doubt the story istrue

74

 Feb 02, 2010 at 06:19 PM Shmuel Says:

Reply to #58  
Charlie Hall Says:

This is barely a shilah at all! Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities and it has received the support of some of the greatest poskim in the world as indicated by the many comments here. It is an interesting question as to how the minhag of having all mourners say kaddish in unison rather than have a single mourner say kaddish in shul has developed, but that is not the issue here.

"Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities"

I don’t know what you are talking about! I’ve only seen it twice in my life in any shul that at least pretends to be orthodox. One in Montreal, which was very close to my hotel, but even people at the hotel warned me about it. Another – the certain place in Washington that most of you probably know, a sorry excuse for makom Torah, were Lieberman dovens. There, I dropped a name!

Actually, I have a funny story about this second one. My nephew from London was with us in Baltimore for Pesach couple of years ago. I took him to Washington on Chol Amoed, and we went to that, in a manner of speaking, 'shul' for Mincha. Unexpectedly, after Aleinu, some woman started saying Kaddish. I was totally unprepared (my nephew somewhat scared), so after the fourth word of that Kaddish, instead of omein, I involuntarily blurted out ‘Oy Vey!’ Some men smiled. Most were not amused.

75

 Feb 03, 2010 at 02:02 AM PMO Says:

Reply to #74  
Shmuel Says:

"Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities"

I don’t know what you are talking about! I’ve only seen it twice in my life in any shul that at least pretends to be orthodox. One in Montreal, which was very close to my hotel, but even people at the hotel warned me about it. Another – the certain place in Washington that most of you probably know, a sorry excuse for makom Torah, were Lieberman dovens. There, I dropped a name!

Actually, I have a funny story about this second one. My nephew from London was with us in Baltimore for Pesach couple of years ago. I took him to Washington on Chol Amoed, and we went to that, in a manner of speaking, 'shul' for Mincha. Unexpectedly, after Aleinu, some woman started saying Kaddish. I was totally unprepared (my nephew somewhat scared), so after the fourth word of that Kaddish, instead of omein, I involuntarily blurted out ‘Oy Vey!’ Some men smiled. Most were not amused.

As someone who travels often around the US and abroad I can assure you that women saying kaddish IS a fact in the overwhelming majority of orthodox communities. Typically they say it softly along with the men such that you can barely hear them. Reb Moshe, by the way, permitted this. It is not so unusual.

76

 Feb 03, 2010 at 05:58 AM Chareidi Says:

Just clarify the facts. Reb Moshe zt"l writes sidewise in a tshuva (vol 8?) to the question:
"Is a mechitzah necessary if only one woman is in shul?
He replies "No, there was often a poor woman who came into the shul for alms, or a widow who came to say Kaddish, without a mechitzah."
There is no doubt that in those cases in prewar Russia, the woman was properly dressed, hair completely covered, sat quietly in the back of of the shul, and said Kaddish softly without chazanus without any personal or political aspirations in order that the departed soul should be elevated.
In another case the Liska Roov's sons predeceased him and his surviving daughters said kaddish, no doubt abiding by the aforementioned protocol.

In our time, when selfless commitment to Torah principles has pushed aside in favor of "equality", political aspirations, and political correctness, a stronger line must be drawn as stated by the Rambam regarding the "middle road" vs. extremism.

(cont'd)

77

 Feb 03, 2010 at 06:12 AM Chareidi Says:

(cont'd)

A comparison may be given to the daily recitation of the birchas kohanim, by the kohanim in sefardi shuls, as opposed to it's omission in Ashkanazi shuls. Although great poskim like shu"t min hashamayim and shu"t Ramo mipano say that the birkas kohanim should be recited by the kohanim daily, since it was Shabsi Tzvi who tried to reintroduce it, it has become taboo. Here we are talking about a mtzvas asay di'oreisa of birkas Kohanim, and it has become taboo because of certain associations. Although R' Ovadia's psak is not a chiddush, it can be understood that anything that is seen as promoting feminism is taboo, even if there are halachic sources that permit it. The woman who uses R' Ovadia's psak to walk into a chareidi shul with her (chazon ish's) tefach of hair sticking out from her shmattah, in order to demonstrate that she is equal to the men in shul will surely be sentenced to the worst form of gehenim. The woman who stands behind the mechitzah and says kaddish under her breathe along with the men in a manner which is unnoticeable, as was always done by nashim hakasharus vihatznuos, will elevate the neshama. Nothing new here.

78

 Feb 03, 2010 at 08:33 AM Milhouse Says:

Reply to #68  
Anonymous Says:

The danger of this is that there is clearly an issur on women saying kaddish in Shul, as is rampant within the uneducated modern communities in NYC. This same wholesale rebellion (deciding that it is by extension okay for women to recite in Shul) is the reason that it continues to be prohibited for Ashkenazim today.

There is no such issur, let alone a "clear" one. Some poskim are against it for policy reasons, others are for it. But EVERYONE agrees that at home she can say it.

79

 Feb 03, 2010 at 08:38 AM Milhouse Says:

Reply to #15  
yank Says:

and where is the mihug a lady says 'hagomel' in shul , also MO?

A better question is where is this NOT the minhag, and how do they justify it, when every single posek says that women are just as obligated as men?

80

 Feb 03, 2010 at 10:11 AM Fred Says:

Reply to #74  
Shmuel Says:

"Women saying kaddish is now something that is a fact in the overwhelming majority of Orthodox communities"

I don’t know what you are talking about! I’ve only seen it twice in my life in any shul that at least pretends to be orthodox. One in Montreal, which was very close to my hotel, but even people at the hotel warned me about it. Another – the certain place in Washington that most of you probably know, a sorry excuse for makom Torah, were Lieberman dovens. There, I dropped a name!

Actually, I have a funny story about this second one. My nephew from London was with us in Baltimore for Pesach couple of years ago. I took him to Washington on Chol Amoed, and we went to that, in a manner of speaking, 'shul' for Mincha. Unexpectedly, after Aleinu, some woman started saying Kaddish. I was totally unprepared (my nephew somewhat scared), so after the fourth word of that Kaddish, instead of omein, I involuntarily blurted out ‘Oy Vey!’ Some men smiled. Most were not amused.

They were right not be amused. Thats disgusting behavior. What were you thinking?
That since its not something you are used to it must be wrong? I cannot imagine
why you wouldnt answer "Amen" to any other kind of bracah a women would do. Why should this be different? Sorry, but your behavior was inappropriate and is not something to joke about.

81

 Feb 09, 2010 at 08:14 AM anonymous Says:

Reply to #49  
Anonymous Says:

And where is it assur for a woman to wear a tallis?
Does your wife shake lulav? It is also a mitzvah shehazman grama!
The Kopzhnitzer Rebbe also used to have his wife and daughters light menorah. What a shock!!!!

With all due respect, my grandmother grew up in the home of the Kopishnitzer Rebbe Zt"l, where did you hear this that his Rebbitzen lit the menorah?

82

 Jun 25, 2010 at 07:22 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #10  
Fred Says:

Personally, I find the "weakening the barriers" argument obscene and juvenille. Either its mutar or its not. This sort of "man the barricades!" argument can be used to keep women out of public life altogether. (Yeah, I can hear many of you saying "Amen"...You lose me here)

It's not cut and dry as you make it out to be. There are major negative ramifications and breaches, if the religion is continually diluted. If not for the Rabbinic leaders insight, who knows where the frum jew would be today in yiddishkeit!

83

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