Maftir & Haftora: Laws, Background, Avel. Yartzite

Maftir-Haftorah:[1]

A. Background:

Haftorah:[2] The reading of the Haftorah was instituted by the Anshei Kneses Hagedola.[3] They instituted that one should read from Navi on every holiday from a portion that deals with the holiday events. The Sages of the Mishneh and Gemara chose the exact portion of Navi that is read on each holiday.

The Maftir:[4] [Maftir in truth refers to the reading of the portion from Navi formally known as the Haftorah. It comes from the word Petor which means finish, as the reading is completed with the Haftorah.] However, the person that reads the Maftir from Navi is also required to first read a section from the Torah.[5]

Maftir on Yomim Tovim: In the times of the Sages of the Mishneh and Talmud the Maftir would read from the Torah as part of the five Aliyos that were read from the portion of that Holiday which was read from the first Torah scroll. [There was hence no second scroll taken out from the ark] However, in later generations, the Rabanan Savuraiy established, and so was accustomed by the Geonim which followed them, that the Maftir is to read [from a second scroll] the portion of the Musaf sacrifice written in Parshas Pinchas. This institution was based on the following teaching of the Sages: Avraham stated in front of Hashem “Master of the world when the Temple is not in existence the children of Israel do not have on what to find support. What will be with my children when they sin? Perhaps you will do to them as you did to the generation of the Mabul and Haflaga. Hashem answered “I have already established for them the order of the Karbanos. When the Karbanos are read, I consider it as if they sacrificed the Karban before me and I forgive all of their sins. 

Two Torah scrolls:[6] Being that two different sections of the Torah need to be read on Yom Tov[7], therefore, one is initially required to remove two Torah scrolls; one for the Holiday reading, and the second for the Maftir. It does not suffice to remove only one Torah scroll and then roll it to the Parsha of Musafim [for Maftir].[8]

B. General laws:

Remembered in middle:[9] If one read the wrong weeks Haftorah and remembered his mistake in the middle, prior to saying the concluding.

Katan:  Admur 284:9; Ketzos Hashulchan 88:1 The Chabad custom is not to call a child even for Maftir.

One who does not know to read the Haftorah:[10] Initially, only one who knows to read the Haftorah is to be called up for Maftir. However, Bedieved if he was already called up, he is to say the blessings and have another read the Haftorah.

When to begin the Haftorah: One is not to begin the Haftorah until the Sefer Torah is returned back into its Meil.[11] One is not to begin the Haftorah until the correct Haftorah is open before him.

Concentrating on the blessings and the Haftorah: Every individual is to concentrate on the words of the blessing of the Haftorah in order so it count towards the 100 daily blessings.

Reading to oneself:[12] The custom is to read the Haftorah along silently together with the Baal Korei, word by word, in an inaudible voice.

Talking:[13] It is forbidden to talk during the Haftorah just as is the rule regarding Kerias Hatorah.

Said wrong Haftorah:[14] If one read the wrong weeks Haftorah and remembered his mistake in the middle, prior to saying the concluding blessings, he is to stop and read the correct Haftorah without repeating the initial blessing.

 

If one did not hear the entire blessing, may he answer Amen if it is a blessing that he is hearing in order to be Yotzei Meiah Brachos, such as the blessings of Maftir?[15]

Yes. One may thus answer Amen so long as he knows which blessing was said, even though he did not hear the blessing.[16] Nevertheless, one does not fulfill his obligation of Meiah Brachos with such a blessing unless he heard the blessing from the person saying it.

 

C. Leaving the Haftorah open until the concluding blessings are recited:[17]

The Sefer Nevim [i.e. Haftorah; Chumash[18]] is not to be removed from before the Maftir until after he completes the recital of the after blessings in order so he sees [the Haftorah] and says the blessing over the [words that he read for] Haftorah.[19]

 

Q&A

May one close the Haftorah book prior to reading the after blessings?

It is permitted to close the Sefer Haftorah prior to the blessings, so long as one does not remove the Sefer from the area.[20] However, some Poskim[21] rule it is initially best to leave the Sefer open to the Haftorah until after the blessings are recited.[22]

D. Avel/Mourner:[23]

It is customary for the Avel over a parent to recite the Maftir from the Navi [on Shabbos, Yom Tov, and fast days].[24] [Furthermore, just as some mourners take upon themselves to say the Kaddish for relatives other than a parent[25], so too they are to endeavor to say Maftir, and so was the custom of the Rebbe in 1988.[26] In the event that there is more than one mourner present, one is to follow the laws of precedence lineated earlier regarding Davening for the Amud. If applicable, one is to make more than one Minyan of Keria for the various Aveilim.[27] There is no obligation for the Avel to Daven in a different Shul for the sake of Maftir, if he is able to Daven with greater concentration in his Shul.[28] In the event that the Avel cannot receive Maftir, he is to0 endeavor to receive a different Aliyah.[29]]

The time period: Ideally, the Maftir is meant to be recited throughout the 12 months, just like the law by Kaddish[30], however the custom is to only recite it for 11 months from the passing, just as is the custom regarding Kaddish.[31]

 

Q&A

Must the Gabaiy give Maftir to one who has a Yartzite that week?[32]

No. While it is proper and respectful to do so, a person with a Yartzite is not considered an actual Chiyuv that he has to receive the Aliyah of Maftir. Furthermore, even one who has a Yartzite on Shabbos, and is considered a Chiyuv, it is not an obligation to give him Maftir, even though it is proper to do so. It is thus permitted for the Gabaiy to sell the Aliyah.[33]

 

Who receives precedence if both an Avel and a Yartzite want Maftir?[34]

A person with a Yartzite that week receives precedence over an Avel within the year, even if he is within Shloshim.

Not to quarrel:[35]

One is not to quarrel over any Mitzvah, even if it is a Biblical command, and is certainly not to quarrel over the receiving of Maftir. Through avoiding dispute one will cause a greater Iluiy Neshama than even the Maftir itself.[36]

E. Yartzite:[37]

It is customary for one who has a Yartzite of a parent to receive the Aliyah of Maftir on the Shabbos prior to the Yartzite.[38] In the event that the Yartzite falls on Shabbos, he is to receive Maftir on that Shabbos and not on the Shabbos before.[39]

 

Q&A

Must the Gabaiy give Maftir to one who has a Yartzite that week?[40]

No. While it is proper and respectful to do so, a person with a Yartzite is not considered an actual Chiyuv that he has to receive the Aliyah of Maftir. Furthermore, even one who has a Yartzite on Shabbos, and is considered a Chiyuv, it is not an obligation to give him Maftir, even though it is proper to do so. It is thus permitted for the Gabaiy to sell the Aliyah.[41]

 

Who receives precedence if both an Avel and a Yartzite are present?[42]

A person with a Yartzite that week receives precedence over an Avel within the year, even if he is within Shloshim.

Who receives precedence if there are two people with Yartzites present?[43]

The Yartzites are on different days of the weeks: The person whose Yartzite falls earlier in the week receives precedence. Thus, if one person’s parent Yartzite is on Sunday while the other’s is on Monday, the person with the Sunday Yartzite receives the Maftir.

Both Yartzites are on the same day of the week:  If both person’s parents Yartzite is on the same day of the week, then a Yartzite of father receives precedence over the Yartzite of a mother. If they both have a Yartzite for the same parent then a Torah scholar receives precedence. If they are both of equal stature, then a compromise is to be made.

Not to quarrel:[44]

One is not to quarrel over any Mitzvah, even if it is a Biblical command, and is certainly not to quarrel over the receiving of Maftir. Through avoiding dispute one will cause a greater Iluiy Neshama than even the Maftir itself.[45]

 

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[1] Ketzos Hashulchan 88

[2] Admur 488:5

[3] Admur ibid; Sefer Hamachria 31 in name of Rabbeinu Tma that it was instituted by Ezra

[4] Admur 488:6

[5] Admur 282:10; 488:6

[6] Admur 488:6; Michaber 144:3

[7] One must read from the Parsha of the Holiday, as per the institution of Moshe Rabbeinu, and one msut also read the Karbanaos from Parshas Pinchas, as per the instititution of the Rabanan Savuraiy.

[8] The reason: As one may not roll a Sefer Torah in front of the congregation due to respect of the congregation. [Admnur ibid]

[9] See Ketzos Hashulchan ibid footnote 16; Nimukei Orach Chaim 284/1; Shaareiy Efraim 9/19 in Pischeiy Shearim

[10] Ketzos Hashulchan 88:1

[11] Admur 284:11; Michaber 147:6

[12] Admur 284:11; Sefer Haminhagim p. 61 [English]

[13] Michaber 146:3

[14] See Ketzos Hashulchan ibid footnote 16; Nimukei Orach Chaim 284/1; Shaareiy Efraim 9/19 in Pischeiy Shearim

[15] Admur 46/1; M”A 46/8; Peri Chadash 46/3

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that one fulfills his obligation of Meiah Brachos with answering Amen over the blessing even if he did not hear the blessing, so long as he knows which blessing was. [Beis Yosef 46; P”M 124 M”Z 4]

[16] The reason: The reason for this is because the obligation of Meiah Brachos is different than the obligation of other blessings, and thus is permitted to answer Amen even if one did not hear the blessing, even according to the first opinion in 124/11. [P”M ibid]

[17] Admur 284/12; M”A 284/6; M”B 284/12; Shivlei Haleket 80 in name of Geonim; Tanya 16; Mateh Moshe 455; Hagahos Maimanis

[18] M”B ibid

[19] The reason: This is similar to the reading of the Torah in which case we rule the Sefer Torah may not be removed until the after blessing [Mateh Moshe ibid]

[20] Elya Raba 284/10 based on implication of M”A and Admur ibid; Kaf Hachaim 284/34The reason: As even by a Sefer Torah, one may close the Sefer prior to the after blessing, and the prohibition is only against removing it. [Elya Raba ibid]

[21] Shaareiy Efraim 9/34; See “The Laws of Purim” Chapter 7 Halacha 9 regarding a dispute in when the Megillah is to be rolled up, after or before the blessing of Harav Es Riveinu

[22] The reason: As when reading from a Chumash, it is not recognizable that one is saying the blessing over the Haftorah if he closes it. [Pischei Shearim 9/14]

[23] Rama 376/4; Levush 376/4; Beis Yosef and Darkei Moshe 376; Kol Bo 114; Rivash 115; Maaseh Derebbe Akiva recorded in Midrash Zohar Chadash Acharei p. 49b that a Niftar came to Rebbe Akiva in a  dream and told him that the Maftir helped elevate his soul from Geheenom throughout the 12 months; Ketzos Hashulchan 88 footnote 4; Igros Kodesh 3/7; 17/271 that so was the directive of the Rebbe Rayatz; Igros Kodesh Rayatz 12/394 that so was the custom of the Rashab; See Pnei Baruch 35/14; Nitei Gavriel 65/9; Piskeiy Teshuvos 132/18

[24] The reason: As the blessings of the Haftorah discuss the redemption of Klal Yisrael [Seder Hayom] and hence help elevate the Neshama similar to Kaddish. [Pnei Baruch ibid footnote 32] Additionally, the congregation answers Amen to his blessings which also helps elevate the Neshama similar to the Amen’s of Kaddish. [Nimukei Orach Chaim 284/3]

[25] See Chapter ?? Halacha 2

[26] So replied to me also Rav Y.S. Ginzberg and Rav Garelik in a written correspondence.

[27] Igros Kodesh Rayatz 12/394 that by the Rebbe Rashab, during his year of Aveilus, there were three Minyanim for Kerias Hatorah.

[28] Nitei Gavriel 65/10

[29] As a) Here too one meritc the congregation with the saying of Amen; See Igros Kodesh 3/7

[30] See Rama 376/4 who implies that also Maftir is ideally to be said for the 12 month period, similar to Kaddish

[31] Rama ibid regarding Kaddish and being a Chazan and the same seemingly implies to the Haftorah, and so writes: Igros Kodesh 3/7 [printed in Shulchan Menachem 5/308]; Nitei Gavriel ibid; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 284/1 footnote 5

Other opinions: Some are accustomed to recite Maftir throughout the 12 months. [Rivash ibid, brought in Kaf Hachaim 284/6; Mateh Efraim 4/2; Levushei Mordechai Tinyana 164; Pnei Baruch ibid; Piskeiy Teshuvos 284/1 footnote 5]

[32] Piskeiy Teshuvos 284/1; See M”A 282/18; Levush 282; Biur Halacha 136 “Shabbos” who all omit the Shabbos before a Yartzite as a Chiyuv

[33] Ketzos Hashulchan 88 footnote 4

[34] As is the law regarding Kaddish and leading the prayers, in which a Yartzite receives precedence; Az Nidbaru 2/72 that so is the custom even though receiving Maftir for an Avel is brought in the Rama while receiving Maftir for a Yartzite is only a custom

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that an Avel within the 12 months receives prec3edence over a Yartzite regarding Maftir. [Maaseh Eliyahu 294, brought in Pnei Baruch 35 footnote 32]

[35] Admur 53/29; M”A 53/26; Kaf Hachaim 284/6

[36] Kaf Hachaim ibid

[37] Birkeiy Yosef 284/1; Shaareiy Efraim 9/42; Kitzur SHU”A 78/11; Kaf Hachaim 284/6; Ketzos Hashulchan 88/1; Sefer Haminhagim p. 181 [English]; ShuSee Rama 376/4 and Chapter ? Halacha ?? regarding the first year of Aveilus; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 136/9 and 284/1 footnote 8 and 12

[38] The reason: As according to the Zohar the main elevation of the Neshama occurs on the Shabbos before the Yartzite. [Alef Hamagen on Mateh Efraim 3] the blessings of the Haftorah discuss the redemption of Klal Yisrael [Seder Hayom] and hence help elevate the Neshama similar to Kaddish. [Pnei Baruch ibid footnote 32] Additionally, the congregation answers Amen to his blessings which also helps elevate the Neshama similar to the Amen’s of Kaddish. [Nimukei Orach Chaim 284/3]

[39] Sefer Haminhagim ibid

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule one is to receive an Aliyah for Maftir on the preceding Shabbos even in such a case. [Maaseh Avraham 56; Shaareiy Efraim 9/42; Gesher Hachaim 32; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 284 footnote 13]

[40] Piskeiy Teshuvos 284/1; See M”A 282/18; Levush 282; Biur Halacha 136 “Shabbos” who all omit the Shabbos before a Yartzite as a Chiyuv

[41] Ketzos Hashulchan 88 footnote 4

[42] As is the law regarding Kaddish and leading the prayers, in which a Yartzite receives precedence; Az Nidbaru 2/72 that so is the custom even though receiving Maftir for an Avel is brought in the Rama while receiving Maftir for a Yartzite is only a custom; Piskeiy Teshuvos 284 footnote 8

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that an Avel within the 12 months receives prec3edence over a Yartzite regarding Maftir. [Maaseh Eliyahu 294, brought in Pnei Baruch 35 footnote 32]

[43] Kaf Hachaim 284/6; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 136/9; Ketzos Hashulchan 88 footnote 4

[44] Admur 53/29; M”A 53/26; Kaf Hachaim 284/6

[45] Kaf Hachaim ibid

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