From the Rav’s Desk: Switching Chazan after Yishtabach

  1. Question: [Sunday, 10th Kisleiv, 5783]

I was asked to switch the Chazan by Yishtabach, and I accidentally already finished Pesukei Dezimra and said Yishtabach by the time it came time for me to switch when the Chazan for Pesukei Dezimra reached Yishtabach. What am I to do?


In such a case, the Chazan of Pesukei Dezimra is to complete Yishtabach out loud, and you may then immediately recite the half Kaddish afterwards and take over as Chazan.

Explanation: Kaddish may never be said unless it was preceded by verses of praise. Hence one must recite Yishtabach prior to the half Kaddish, and hence the law is that if the Chazan already recited Yishtabach prior to the arrival of the Minyan, then after the Minyan arrives he is to repeat part of Pesukei Dezimra and then say [the half] Kaddish [and Barchu]. It is not, however, necessary for specifically the Chazan to say verse of praise out loud prior to the Kaddish and rather it suffices for anyone to do so out loud to obligate the Kaddish in being said. [Hence, after the Chazan finishes Shir Shel Yom, the Aveilim say Kaddish Yasom despite them not having personally recited the verses out loud.] Accordingly, here too, so long as someone finishes Yishtabach out loud, the Kaddish may be said by the new Chazan.

Sources: See Rivivos Efraim 1:49; See regarding if made a delay between Yishtabach and Kaddish: Admur 54:4; Rama 54:3; Sefer Hamachkim of Rav Nasan Bar Yehuda; Orchos Chaim; Kol Bo 6; So rule regarding our case if no Minyan was available by Yishtabach and then a Minyan arrived: Derech Hachaim 30; Kitzur SHU”A 15:1; M”B 53:11 [however see 55:2 regarding if Minyan immediately arrived]; Ketzos Hashulchan 18:10; Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid; Regarding the general need to repeat verses with the Minyan before reciting Kaddish see: M”A 54:3; 69:4; 234:1; Elya Raba 55:3; Chesed Lealafim 54:3; Chayeh Adam 30:7; M”B 54:8 and 55:2 [concludes that Achronim rule like M”A ibid]; Kaf Hachaim 55:5 and 41; Ketzos Hashulchan 16:2 footnote 6

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