Blessings Before/After Reading Torah

The opportunity to recite the blessings before and after the reading of the Torah is a very special honor. OJC believes everyone should have the chance no matter their Jewish educational background. In order to help anyone who would like to have an Aliyah (literally means, “to go up”), OJC provides very specific instructions and even an audio version of the blessings to help you feel more comfortable. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to either of our Rabbis.

Once the Torah service begins, someone will announce the next person to say the blessings before and after the Torah reading. They will usually ask you for your Hebrew name and the Hebrew name of your father and mother if you know it.

Once you are called up to the Bimah (the altar/stage), you can take your Tallit or Siddur (Prayer Book), lift and kiss a fringe/book and touch the Torah where the Torah Pointer is facing.

Then you can begin to say the blessing before the Torah.

You start by saying;

Barkhu et Adonai Hamivorach

Congregation responds;

Baruch Adonai Hamivorach Leolam Vaed

Then you repeat;

Baruch Adonai Hamivorach Leolam Vaed

Then you say the full blessing;

Baruch ata adonai, elohainu melech ha’olam, asher ba-char banu mikal ha-ah-mim v’natan lanu et torahto. Baruch ata adonai, noten hatorah

You can also hear what it sounds like by listening to our very own Cantor Elon.

 

 

The Torah portion is then read by the “Baal Korey” – the Torah reader. When reader completes reading the Torah portion you may, once again, take your Tallit or Siddur (Prayer Book), lift and kiss a fringe/book and touch the Torah where the Torah Pointer is facing. Then recite the following blessing:

Baruch ata adonai, eloheinu melech ha’olam, asher natan lanu torat emet, v’chayei olam nata b’tocheinu. Baruch ata adonai, noten hatorah

You can also hear what it sounds like by listening to our very own Cantor Elon.

After you have finished, you move over next to the second gabi (usually on the left hand side — facing the Congregation — of where the Torah is being read) until the end of the next person completes reciting the second blessing above. Then you will leave the Bimah and return to your seat.

You may notice some people walking down the stairs backwards after leaving the Bimah. There is a custom not to turn your back to the ark (where the Torah is stored) when leaving the Bimah and going down the stairs backwards. However, this is not required and should not be done if you feel uncomfortable or fear that you may fall.

We hope you will take advantage of the opportunity to receive this special honor, this Aliyah, before our congregation. Aliyahs can be given out for birthdays, yahrzeits, anniversaries or any other important dates you would like to honor. Just make the request either to the main office or email Dorie Lynn to volunteer.