Sunday, 15 February 2015

Another Shul, Another Nusach

Question: I usually daven nusach ashkenaz, though sometimes daven in a nusach sefard shul, and am confused what I should do when the davening is different.
Answer: There are a few minor differences between different nuschaos. While it is important that one follows the nusach of one’s father or community, the Gemara (Yevamos 13b) writes that the prohibition of lo sisgodedu (Devarim 14:1) applies to practicing different customs to each other. Whether this applies here is a matter of debate.
R’ Ovadia Yosef (Yabia Omer 6:10:4) writes that only the chazzan needs to daven according to the shul’s nusach. Everyone else may daven according to their own nusach even for tefillos said out loud, such as kedusha.
The Netziv (Meshiv Davar 1:17:7), R’ Yitzchak Yaakov Weiss (Minchas Yitzchak 7:5) and R’ Moshe Feinstein (Igros Moshe OC 2:23; 2:104; 4:34) write that when davening the silent amida, one should daven according to one’s own nusach. When davening anything out loud, however, one should adapt to the shul’s nusach. Unlike shemone esrei that one can daven alone, one can only say kedusha, for example, with a minyan. Thus, in a sefard shul one should say nakdishach and kesser in kedusha rather than nekadesh and naritzach, etc.
While there are different opinions as to what to do when saying pesukei dezimra in a shul with a different nusach the accepted custom is to daven in one’s own nusach without drawing undue attention to it by being too loud.

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