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Religious Committee

Congregation Bnai Yeshurun's Religious Committee is comprised of the gabbaim of the various Shabbat morning minyanim and is chaired by the Rabbi and Gabbai Rishon. The committee addresses all issues pertaining to tefilah.


Tefillah Guidelines

1. Pesukei DeZimra. The chazan should make sure that the tzibbur is given at least 12 minutes for the recitation of Pesukei DeZimra. (i.e. Yishtabach should only be recited at least 12 minutes after each minyan begins.) The chazan should, of course, make sure to pace the tefillah appropriately to the best of his ability.

2. Keriat Shema. When a CBY Rabbi is present, the chazan should wait for the Rabbi to finish Keriat Shema or otherwise signal that the chazan should continue. When no Rabbi is present, the chazan should wait a minimum of 90 seconds before finishing Keriat Shema.

3. Shemoneh Esrei. When a CBY Rabbi is present, the chazan should wait for the rabbi to finish Shemoneh Esrei or otherwise signal that the chazan should continue. When no Rabbi is present, the chazan should wait a minimum of 4 minutes before beginning Chazarat Ha-Shatz / Kaddish.

4. Shacharit. No Shacharit Minyan in CBY should finish in less than 30 minutes on non-laining days.

5. Jackets. The minhag at CBY is that Baalei Tefillah wear a jacket while leading the davening. Jackets in various sizes are available for use. If in need, please ask a Gabbai for assistance.

6. Note on “Chiyuvim”. The definition of a chiyuv is that the individual should try to procure the amud; the Kehilah is not obligated to accord the chiyuv this honor. The following list is to serve as a suggested guideline for the gabbaim; the gabbaim certainly should use proper discretion as the situation warrants in determining priorities.

Priority for the Amud [Full Members]
The priority for full members assuming the amud is as follows: 1] One who is in shiva and coming to shul 2] One who is observing a yahrzeit (for a parent, spouse or child) on that day (with priority for the yahrzeit of a parent) 3] One who is observing sheloshim (for a parent, spouse or child with priority for the sheloshim of a parent) 4] an aveil saying kaddish after sheloshim for a parent.

Priority for the Amud [Affiliate Members and Guests]
Out-Of-Town Guests. If a guest from outside the community is a chiyuv, then the guidelines above for full members should be followed. Accordingly: If a guest and full member are at the same level of chiyuv, then the full member takes priority. If a guest is a higher level of chiyuv than a full member, then the guest will take priority over the full member.

Affiliate Members. Affiliate members are, by definition, members of other shuls within the Teaneck/Bergenfield community. Accordingly, affiliate members rank below all chiyuvim outlined above. In other words, if a guest or full member has any level of chiyuv outlined above, they will place before an affiliate member.

Local Non-Members. If there is no other chiyuv present whatsoever, local non-members may lead the davening; if there is any chiyuv present - full member, out-of-town guest, or affiliate member - that chiyuv will take priority.

7. Kaddeishim Recited Always. Gabbaim should ensure that Kaddish Derabanan (including the one that follows R’ Yishmael) and the kaddish which follows Aleinu are always recited, even when no mourner is present. The kaddish may be recited by the baal tefilah or, if he is hesitant to do so, by any participant of the minyan. Other mourners’ kadeishim may be omitted if no aveilim are present.

8. Women Reciting Kaddish. It is the practice of our congregation to allow women who desire to recite the mourners’ kaddish to do so in a soft undertone. If no male aveilim are present, a male participant must recite the kaddeishim aloud. At no time should a woman be the sole person reciting kaddish, and at no time should a woman be denied the opportunity to recite kaddish because no men are doing so. Accordingly, gabbaim must always be mindful of mourners in the women’s section; if there is a woman reciting kaddish, gabbaim must ensure that a man, mourner or not, is reciting kaddish as well. (Bear in mind that the first kaddish of each tefillah must be recited whether or not aveilim are present, as per the previous paragraph, and will give gabbaim an opportunity to assess if any women are reciting kaddish.)

9. Pace of Kaddish. In order to allow everyone who needs to recite kaddish to do so in the respectful manner it warrants and to allow the congregation to answer, aveilim should adjust their pace - not too fast or too slow - to recite it in unison.

May Hashem hear all of our tefillot and grant yeshuot to Am Yisrael!

Sun, July 14 2024 8 Tammuz 5784