Thursday, May 04, 2006

More Gabbai Shailos

I had a discussion today regarding on which side of the bima should the gabbai stand. It seems that in some shuls the gabbai stands to the right of the bima and in some shuls he stands to the left. Which is correct or are both correct.

The Shulchan Aruch in 141:3 writes that if the gabbai (or sirser as he is called in the Shulchan Aruch) gets an aliyah you should have someone else stand up by the bima. Both the Mishna Berurah and Aruch Hashulchan explain based on a Yerushalmi that ideally you need three people by the bima. The reason is because k'riyas hatorah represents mattan torah and at mattan torah there was HKBH, Moshe and B'nei Yisroel. The ba'al korei reprsents HKBH, the oleh represents B'nei Yisroel and the gabbai represents Moshe.

It seems everyone agrees the oleh stands to the right of the ba'al korei. Although the Mishan Berurah doesn't tell you where the gabbai stands the Aruch Hashulchan quotes a Levush that the gabbai should stand to the right of the bima. In other words the oleh is sandwhiched in between the ba'al korei and the gabbai. I had thought this makes sense m'sevara because the oleh represents B'nei Yisroel and it seems they should be in the middle between Moshe and HKBH.

The Piskei Teshuvos brings down another opinion from the Siddur Ya'avetz that the gabbai should be to the left of the bima and the ba'al korei should be in the middle and the oleh to the right of the ba'al korei.

The bottom line is there seems to be no right (or wrong) answer. Also, since most shuls have a gabbai sheini standing on the opposite side of the gabbai rishon it would seem you are yotzei both shittos. (Unless you say the gabbai representing Moshe has to call people up but I'm not sure if that makes sense)

I have one more shailah but I will get to it tomorrow. The shailah is a) how does a gabbai call up the ba'al korei and b) how how does a gabbai call up his father

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