shabbos candles

The Shabbos Weekly
Halachos Series on Hilchos Shabbos

shabbos candles

Published by
Pirchei Shoshanim

A Project of
The Shema Yisrael Torah Network

Based on the Shiurim Given by

Rabbi Dovid
Ostroff, shlita

developed from the Chabura of the
Pirchei Shoshanim Shulchan Aruch Learning Project

These Halachos were shown by Rabbi Ostroff to
HaGaon HaRav Moshe Sternbuch, shlita


Questions for the Week of Erev Yom Kippursubscribe


Please note: This issue deals with the chagim and is not developed from the Chabura of the Shulchan Aruch Learning Project.

If one’s husband has not yet returned from shul after Yom Kippur, or if one feels weak before Ma’ariv after Yom Kippur, may one eat or drink?

The Shulchan Aruch 1says that it is forbidden to eat any food or drink, except for water, before havdalah. Therefore, if the housewife is waiting for her husband to make havdalah it is advisable in such a situation to drink water, because we see that water is permitted before havdalah. However, she should either say Boruch hamavdil bein kodesh l’chol, or have said ata chonantanu in ma’ariv, before drinking. 2

As for drinking water before ma’ariv after it is already nighttime, the Elef HaMagen 3on the Mateh Efrayim says that he may, only that he should drink in private so that others will not learn from him to drink before nighttime. He should also say Boruch Hamavdil before drinking.

If my Yom Kippur candle extinguished before managing to make havdalah, what am I supposed to do with regards to a new candle?

Although we make a b’rocho over fire after Shabbos and after Yom Kippur, in essence they are very different.

After Shabbos the b’rocho is made over fire to offer praise to Hashem for bestowing Adam HaRishon with the inspiration to strike two flints together and bring forth fire. This happened after Shabbos and hence we praise Hashem also after Shabbos.

The b’rocho over fire after Yom Kippur is to demonstrate that fire was prohibited for use throughout Yom Kippur even for cooking, unlike other Festivals, and is now permitted. 4

For this reason one must make the b’rocho over a fire that was alight on Yom Kippur and not over a fire lit after Yom Kippur,5 to demonstrate that this very fire was prohibited to use until now and from now it is permitted.

Therefore the best advice is to light a candle before Yom Kippur that will be used for making the b’rocho after Yom Kippur.6 One should not rely on the gas flame used for heating food, because l’chatchila one should use a flame that was used for light.7 If the candle extinguished before managing to make the b’rocho, one must make an effort to light a candle (or match) from a candle or fire that was alight on Yom Kippur and make a b’rocho on that.8 In such circumstances one may light a candle from the gas range that was alight on Yom Kippur.

What if I cannot get hold of a candle that was alight before Yom Kippur, may I light a candle and make a b’rocho over it?

One may not make a b’rocho over a candle lit from matches after Yom Kippur. However, the poskim write 9that one may make a b’rocho on an electric light (a regular light bulb, not a fluorescent bulb) that was on before Yom Kippur, because it is regarded as fire and suitable for the b’rocho.

Are children or ill people who are required to eat on Yom Kippur permitted to wash before bread, and if yes, how?

It is forbidden to wash oneself on Yom Kippur or to even insert one’s finger into water for that matter, when done for pleasure.10 However washing for a mitzvah is not called a pleasure and is permitted. 11

Therefore, upon awaking in the morning or coming out of the bathroom one washes his hands, although he washes only until the ends of his fingers, as that is adequate enough to meet his halachik requirements.

However, we find that the Cohanim must wash their entire hands 12before blessing the people, because their prescribed halacha requires them to wash the entire hand, and since it is not done for pleasure it is permitted.

The poskim 13learn from there that the same applies to children and to the dangerously ill when washing hands for eating bread on Yom Kippur, as the major opinion requires the entire hand to be washed before partaking of bread.

What is the halacha with regards to Ya’aleh V’yavo in bentching with regards to children or ill people?

Children and dangerously ill people who are permitted and required to eat on Yom Kippur, when eating bread must say Ya’aleh V’yavo when bentching because Yom Kippur is a Yom Tov. 14Kiddush however, is not made before eating and lechem mishne (two whole breads) is not used, because Chazal did not institute these halachos on Yom Kippur. 15

If one forgot to say Ya’aleh V’yavo and he ended off the b’rocho Boneh Yerushalaim, he does not bentch again. 16

[1] Simon 299:1.
[2] SS”K 62:25 and footnote 59. This is in contrast to motzei Shabbos where one may drink water without saying Boruch hamvdil, because on Yom Kippur one was forbidden to drink.
[3] Simon 624:4.
[4] M”B simon 198:1.
[5] Sha’ar Ha’tsiun simon 198:2 and M”B 624:7.
[6] M”B 624:13, because some say that the candle lit in honor of Yom Kippur is inadequate for havdalah being that it was not lit for light. I suggest using the candle lit in the bedroom, as prescribed by the Rama in simon 610:1, as that was used as light.
[7] See SS”K 62:33, footnote 78.
[8] Rama 624:5.
[9] T’shuvos V’hanhagos vol. II simon 302. See Piskei T’shuvos 624 footnote 38.
[10] Simon 613:1.
[11] Simon 613:2
[12] M”B simon 613:7. See the Elef LaMateh on the Mateh Efrayim 613:9.
[13] See the Piskei T’shuvos 613 footnote 6.
[14] Simon 618:10.
[15] Shulchan Aruch HaRav simon 618:18.
[16] M”B 618:29.

Wishing you and your family and all of K’lal Yisroel a G’mar Chasima Tova and we should all have a good and sweet year.

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May we all be inscribed in the Book of Life for a healthy and happy year.

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Note:  The purpose of this series is intended solely for the clarification of the topics discussed and not to render halachic decisions. It is intended to heighten everyone's awareness of important practical questions which do arise on this topic.  One must consult with a proper halachic authority in order to receive p'sak.