1 678

Someone who forgot to count one night
The Mechaber writes that one who neglected to count at night may count in the morning without a beracha. The Mishnah Berurah adds that he may then continue counting the rest of the nights with a beracha. Someone who neglected to count one full day cannot continue to count with a beracha. The Kaf Hachaim offers a suggestion to help people who forgot to count at night. Every morning after Shacharis the chazan should announce the previous night's count and the whole congregation should repeat it after him. Those who forgot to count at night will thus be able to continue counting the rest of the omer with a beracha.

 Hilchos Tefilla 128 (page 19)
 מאמצע סעיף מד נהגו עד אמצע סעיף מה והמקרא

The Daily Mitzva of Birkas Kohanim
The Custom of the Rama
Turning During the Beracha

The daily mitzva of birkas kohanim
It is a mitzva mid'oraisa for the kohanim to bless Klal Yisrael daily. This mitzva applies both in Eretz Yisrael and outside of it, and at all times. Most communities in Eretz Yisrael and some in other countries practice this mitzva every day. Many communities in chutz la'aretz and some in the northern part of Eretz Yisrael do not recite the beracha daily, but only during Mussaf of Yom Tov. According to some poskim, Jews from chutz la'aretz who come to Eretz Yisrael and form their own minyanim and the Jews of the northern areas should preserve their original custom and recite the beracha only during the Yom Tov Mussaf. Likewise, there is an opinion that new congregations founded by Jews from Eretz Yisrael in the north of Eretz Yisrael or in chutz la'aretz should recite the blessing in accordance with the local custom.
( סעיף מד, ס"ק קסד, והגהה לרמ"א; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 169 ו־170)

The custom of the Rama
According to the Rama, only joyous people may recite birkas kohanim. On most days, people are overwhelmed by thoughts about making a living and are not sufficiently happy to recite the prayer, whereas on Yom Tov people are glad enough to recite the blessing. According to other authorities, the prayer is not said on a daily basis because it will delay people from going to work and because non-Jews are present in the shuls. The minhag in most communities outside of Eretz Yisrael follows the Rama. On Yom Kippur, most communities outside of Eretz Yisrael recite birkas kohanim only during Mussaf, but in some communities it is said during Shacharis and Neila as well.
( סעיף מד וס"ק קסו; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 172)
Turning during the beracha
The kohanim turn to their right and left to spread the beracha to all those present when enunciating: yevarechecha, v'yishmerecha, eilecha, vi'chunecha, eilecha, lecha and shalom. When saying these seven words, they draw out the final syllable. These words were chosen because each of them (except lecha) completes a distinct beracha (e.g. yevarechicha-He should bless you) and each directly addresses the audience (aside from shalom).
( סעיף מה וס"ק קסח, קע ו־קעב; וראה מגן אברהם ס"ק עב ומפרשיו)

  • According to the Mechaber, an avel can recite the beracha during the year of mourning for a parent or the thirty days for other relatives. According to the Rama, he may not.
  • Some have the custom that birkas kohanim and the prayer E-lokeinu vE-lokei Avoseinu recited in lieu of birkas kohanim are not recited in a house of mourning. Others have the custom that both are recited in a house of mourning.
  • The poskim discuss the conditions under a kohein who is a doctor would be permitted to attend patients in a hospital.


  • Consecrating the kohein

  • Using the services of a kohein

  • Birkas kohanim at Mincha



PLEASE NOTE:  The information in this email is for learning purposes only. Please review the Mishna Berura and Biurim U'Musafim before making a halachic decision. Hebrew words are occasionally transliterated to enable a smoother reading of the text. Common Ashkenazi pronunciation is generally used in these cases.