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A Daughter Saying Kadish
If one doesn’t have sons, can a daughter say Kadish
after their death?
In ùå"ú çåú éàéø, (1638-1702) he tells of a story that happened in Amsterdam:
Something strange took place in Amsterdam and it is known there. One who didn’t
have any sons instructed before his death that ten men every day within twelve
months of his passing should learn in his house for pay. After the learning,
his daughter should say Kadish. The sages of the congregation and the leaders
didn’t protest. The çåú éàéø says that
it should have been protested since it was done publicly. The ùå"ú
úùåáä îàäáä (1754-1826) brings the
words of the çåú éàéø and adds it
seems the ùå"ú ëðñú éçæ÷àì (1669-1749) agrees with him… However, I saw a beautiful custom
in Prague from earlier times that in a section of the Shul, elder blind and
lame men and women would sit from morning until afternoon and say the entire
Sefer Tehillim daily. And one who didn’t have sons only young daughters, like
five or six years old, they would say Kadish. But in a shul that is designated
for davening, I never saw something like this. It is incorrect that a woman
whether old or young should come to where men are davening…
The Mateh Efraim (1762-1828) writes one who has no sons only a
daughter and instructs before he dies that ten men should learn in his house
for pay and that should be followed with his daughter saying Kadish, he
shouldn’t be listened to and there should be a protest. And surely not to say
the Kadish of Tefila… If a woman wants to bring merit to her father, she should
be careful at all times of davening… to answer by Kadish with serious Kavana
and Hashem will consider it as if she said the Kadish and fulfilled the command
of her father.
In the ùå"ú ùáåú éò÷á (1670-1733), he permits a daughter to say Kadish with
a Minayn in the house as he writes in our case where he left a daughter that says
Kadish in the house with a Minyan but in Shul she can’t say Kadish. R’ Tzvi
Hirsch of Liska (1808-1874) after his daughter passed away permitted
in his Beis Midrash his little granddaughters to say Kadish for their mother
for the entire year.
In 2010, R’ Ovadya Yosef was asked
about a woman who had no brothers if she can recite Kadish for her parents. He permitted her to recite Kadish
over her parents in a minyan at home. R’ Ovadya stated that the woman
couldn’t recite Kadish in front of ten women- since Kadish may not be recited
without a minyan- but could recite it in front of ten men after prayers or
Divrei Torah were said.
R’ Alt merited to learn under the tutelage of R’ Mordechai Friedlander Ztz”l for close to five years. He received Semicha from R’ Zalman Nechemia Goldberg. R’ Alt has written on numerous topics for various websites and publications. He lives with his wife and family in a suburb of Yerushalayim where he studies, writes and teaches. The author is passionate about teaching Jews of all levels of observance.
Yair ("Villages of Yair") is a collection of responsa by R’
Yair Chaim Bacharach. The title Chavos Yair is a
reference to his grandmother Chava- who he esteemed to a great extent- as well as to a place mentioned in Bamidbar 32:41 and
elsewhere in the Torah. His grandmother Chava was a granddaughter of the
Maharal and famed for her unusual scholarship and piety. Her husband R’ Shmuel was appointed rabbi of
Worms. One Friday in 1615, the community suffered a pogrom and R’ Shmuel was a
casualty, passing away at the age of 40. Chava raised her children but never
remarried. That is, although the great Shelah HaKodesh sought her. And when she
refused, he deemed himself to be unworthy of her. Chava’s son, R’ Shimshon, was
also appointed rabbi of Worms where he served until his death in 1670. Chava
lived in Worms until her grandson Yair Chaim’s thirteenth birthday, at which
time she undertook a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, but died on the way. R’ Yair
Chaim served briefly as rabbi of Coblentz and returned to reside in Worms.
Shortly before his death his father, R’ Shimshon, asked the community to
appoint his son in his place. However, the community failed to select him.
Besides his Halachic expertise, he had complete mastery of all the sciences,
music and had a deep interest in history. He also wrote poetry. He compiled a
46 volume encyclopedia on many topics. In 1699, he was finally appointed rabbi
of Worms where his father and grandfather had served before him. He served for
only three years until his death in 1702.
2:229:10. This was authored by R’ Elazar Fleckeles who studied for a decade with his
prime mentor, the Noda B’Yehuda, the rabbi of Prague, becoming his favorite
disciple. He served from 1779 to 1783 as the rabbi of the Moravian
community of Goitein (Kojetín) and then received a call to return to Prague to
take up the posts of rabbi in a Kloyz and judge in the community’s extensive
court system. He rose gradually to become the presiding judge in Beis Din, the
highest religious post in Prague. In 1780, he was appointed Dayan in his native
city Prague. He twice had audience with Emperor Francis I, and enjoyed a good
relationship with the royal censor, Carl Fisher, even printing a Teshuva to
Fisher in his responsa.
Dinei Kadish Yasom, ùòø ã, 8.
R’ Efraim Zalman Margolis received his Talmudic education
at different Yeshivos in which he distinguished himself for the acuteness of
his intellect and for his astonishing memory. His correspondence with the Noda
B’Yehuda and other leading Talmudists soon gained for him a high reputation. He
established a banking-house which proved so successful that within a short time
he became quite wealthy. In 1785, he published his responsa, and in the
following year, the rabbis of Brody elected him one of their number. Being of
independent means, he opened in his house a Yeshiva of which he was the head. Several
of his students became eminent rabbis.
2:93. Also Shaarei Teshuva, Orach Chaim 132:5. The
Shevus Yaakov was a Dayan in Prague in his life among other things.
This was R’ Tzvi
Hersh Friedman who was born Tzvi Hersh Frishman. He changed his last name to
Friedman to avoid being drafted to the army. Even though the community enjoyed
great prosperity, he wouldn’t allow its leaders to raise his salary from one forint
(currency of Hungary), which he received when first appointed to the position.
He was a disciple of the Divrei Chaim of Tzanz. The money that he
accrued from the people coming to seek his advice was distributed to the poor
and to further the various programs he instituted. For himself, he built a
humble home so as to accommodate the multitude of people who came to see him
and ask his advice. Among his major accomplishments was the building of the Shul
which was built in a grandiose manner and able to accommodate 500 people. It
was one of the largest of his time in Hungary. The Shul was built without a
foundation to commemorate the Destruction of the Temple- as a testimony to the
temporary state of the Diaspora.
Darchei Hayashar V’Hatov pg 7b
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