From the Rav’s Desk: 1) Reciting Tachanun on Gimel Tammuz; 2) Visiting Kever at night; 3) Bringing children to a cemetery

  1. Question: [Sunday, 3rd Tammuz, 5781]

Should one recite Tachanun on the day of Gimmel Tamuz?


Those who feel an abundance of joy on this day in commemoration of the release of the previous Rebbe from a decree of “opposite of life,” may omit the saying of Tachanun, as is customary on all “Chag Hageula” of the Rabbeim, such as on Yud Kisleiv, Yud Tes Kisleiv, and Yud Beis Tammuz. However, those who do not have an abundance of feelings of joy for this commemoration, are to recite it as usual. This follows the general custom of Chabad to recite Tachanun on days that commemorate the passing of a Tzadik, unlike Polisher Chassidim who omit Tachanun on the day of the passing of a Tzadik. Thus, in a minyan, seemingly the Chazan should recite Tachanun as usual, and those who feel a true abundance of joy may omit Tachanun and not say it together with the congregation. Nonetheless, they are to stand and say the 13 attributes of mercy together with the congregation, as is the law.

Explanation: The day of Gimel Tamuz is omitted from Hayom Yom and Sefer Haminhagim as part of the list of days that Chabad Chassidim omit Tachanun, which would seem to imply that it is to be recited, and so was indeed the custom by the Rebbe’s minyan. Nonetheless, many Chassidim, especially those who lived in the times of the Rebbe Rayatz such as Rav Mendel Futerfast, Reb Peretz Muchkin, and others, would omit Tachanun. When the Rebbe was addressed this very question in 1988 as to whether Tachanun should be omitted on Gimel Tammuz and Chaiy Elul, the Rebbe be answered that the matter is dependent on one’s feeling, and if one is asking then it is a sign that the feeling is not there. Practically, this seems to imply as above, the matter is subject to each person on a personal and individual level, and no general directives can be given.

Sources: See Heichal Menachem Vol. 3 p. 47 for the Maaneh of the Rebbe; Hiskashrus 840; Otzer Minhagei Chabad p. 21-22; Obviously this refers to a true feeling of joy and not a feeling that simply comes as a result of reading this response. [Otzer ibid] See regarding the general custom of omitting Tachanun on a day on which a miracle took place: Lev Chaim 150; Kaf Hachaim 218/9; Tzitz Eliezer 10/10; Regarding saying the Yud Gimel Midos together with the Minyan, see: See Halef Lecha Shlomo 44; Tehila Ledavid 66:7; Sheivet Halevi 7:12; Igros Moshe 3:89; Yabia Omer 4:8; Piskeiy Teshuvos 131:9; See Sheivet Halevy 9:1; Kinyan Torah 4:9

  1. Question: [Sunday, 3rd Tammuz, 5781]

May one visit a cemetery at night? Is there any difference between the gravesite of Tzadikim and of a relative in this regard?


While some avoid visiting a cemetery at night, the widespread custom is to visit graves even at night. This applies especially to the gravesite of Tzadikim.

Explanation: There is no source for prohibiting visiting a cemetery at nighttime. Nonetheless, some avoid doing so and perhaps this is due to that the side of Gevura and evil is stronger at night and hence we avoid entering the area. Alternatively, the reason is because one does not recite Tehillim at night until midnight. Nonetheless, regarding the gravesite of Tzadikim it is widely accepted to visit even at night.

Sources: See Divrei Torah 3:44; Nitei Gavriel Aveilus 2:82-10

  1. Question: [Sunday, 3rd Tammuz, 5781]

I would like to visit the Rebbe’s Ohel on Gimel Tamuz but I am stuck at home with my baby and I heard that you’re not allowed to bring a baby into a cemetery. May I do so in honor of Gimel Tammuz?


Unlike the common misconception [which is found even among Gentiles and is not exclusively a Jewish misconception], there is no Halachic or Hashkafic or Kabbalistic issue [that I am aware of] with bringing a child into a cemetery, and hence certainly you should not avoid going to the Rebbe’s Ohel just because you have to bring your baby with you. There is no source for avoiding bringing children to a cemetery and it is a mere matter of personal Hergesh/emotion and therefore if you want you may certainly do so anytime. This of course only applies if your child is not a Kohen, in which case it would be an actual prohibition to bring him to any cemetery.

Sources: See Michaber Y.D. 373:1 and Admur O.C. 343:5 that the prohibition against entering a child to a cemetery is only if he is a Kohen

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