Giving charity before prayer:
- Before Davening: It is proper to give charity prior to Davening, in living with the verse “Ani Betzedek Echazeh Panecha/I, with charity will see Your face.”
- The majority of people are accustomed to giving it prior to the start of Hodu, and so is the proper thing to do.
- Giving charity prior to Davening helps to remove foreign thoughts from entering one’s mind during prayer.
- Likewise, doing so draws down Divine revelation and inspiration into one’s thoughts during the prayer.
- When saying the words “Veata Moshel Bakol”: The Poskim rule, based on the teachings of the Arizal, that one is to give the charity in a standing position while saying the words “Veata Moshel Bakol” [in the paragraph of Vayivarech David].
- Nonetheless, this is not considered an obligatory custom, and thus one who desires to follow it may do so if it does not disturb him during his prayer, and one who does so is blessed. However, if one fears that will disturb his prayer, then he should suffice with his giving of charity prior to the start of the prayer.
- Even one who does so is to also give to charity prior to the start of the entire prayer.
- How much charity should one give? The custom of the Arizal was to give a total of three coins to charity upon saying the words “Veata Moshel Bakol.” At first, he would give two coins to charity and then give another third coin to charity.
- This custom is omitted from the Shulchan Aruch of Admur, and the Rebbes writings.
 See Admur 51:11; 92:10; Michaber O.C. 92:10; Y.D. 249:14; Tur 92:10; Rambam Hilchos Matanos Aniyim 10:15; Bava Basra 10a “Rebbe Eliezer Yahiv Peruta Leanai Vehadar Matzli”; M”A 51:7; Taz 92:4; Ketzos Hashulchan 12:6; Kaf Hachaim 51:44; 92:45; Likkutei Torah Ki Savo; Siddur Im Dach p. 18; Tanya Igeres Hakodesh 8; Igros Kodesh 11:324 [13th Menachem Av 5715]; Toras Menachem 5742 4:1953 and 2170; Shulchan Menachem 1:149-153; Kovetz Or Yisrael 16:137; Piskeiy Teshuvos 46:2; 51:2