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11 Nissan 5765 - April 20, 2005 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly







A Detailed Halachic Guide Including Practical Advice for Erev Pesach Shechal Lihiyos BeShabbos

by Rav Moshe Dovid Spiro

We are happy to be able to present excerpts from a guide to the observance of Pesach this year prepared by Rav Spiro. It should be stressed that we have not put in the copious footnotes that are included in the full pamphlet, as well as leaving out extended discussions of alternatives and discussions of bedi'eveds. We have preserved the original numbering so that it is often evident where material was left out. In many cases we have left in original footnote numbers, so that the reader can see where there is additional material in the full work.

The full pamphlet is available at: 94 Bewick Road, Gateshead-on-Tyne, Telephone: (0044) 798 457 7912


Ta'anis of Firstborn:

1) A firstborn adult man, or the father of a firstborn son under Bar Mitzvoh, fasts on Thursday this year and not on Erev Pesach.1 Alternatively, he may partake of a Siyum on Thursday. Some have a Minhag to partake of a Siyum also on Friday.2

Bedikas Chometz:

2) On Thursday night, the eve of 13 Nisan, one searches for the Chometz, recites the Brochoh and then says: "Kol Chamiroh ..." It is ossur to eat within half an hour before the Z'man of Bedikas Chometz. This applies to the Ba'al Habayis and also to any lady who owns her Chometz e.g. a widow. . . .

3) After Bedikas Chometz any Chometz found during the Bedikoh or still required for meals must be placed in a specific place so that it will not become dispersed around the house.


Baking of Matzos Mitzvoh

6) The Shulchon Oruch 7 writes that there is a Minhag to bake Matzos Mitzvoh on Erev Pesach in the afternoon. (Matzos Mitzvoh are those Matzos required for the Seder night Mitzvos.)

Since this is not possible when Erev Pesach falls on Shabbos most Poskim hold that the baking should take place on Friday afternoon.8

There is a widespread Minhag to recite Hallel during the process of baking Matzos Mitzvoh. However this year the Minhag does not apply.

7) Whilst on a normal Erev Pesach afternoon, the time when the Korban Pesach was brought, it is ossur to do proper work, it is permitted this year on Friday afternoon.10

General Preparations

Those who have fillings or false teeth refrain from eating hot chometz food within 24 hours of the Sof Z'man Achilas Chometz. Others only refrain within 24 hours of the onset of Yom Tov (i.e. they only stop eating hot Chometz on Friday night). The halachic definition of "hot" is 45 degrees C.11

(1) One should adjust the timeswitch so that it will switch off the lights only after completion of the Seder.

(2) It is ossur to melt wax on Yom Tov. Therefore it is difficult to fix the candles into the candlesticks and it is advisable to do this before Yom Tov.12 Alternatively one can prepare cut pieces of tinfoil in order to wedge the candles into candlesticks.

(3) If one plans to change the tablecloth on Shabbos ( e.g. from Chometz to Pesachdik, see below) he should make sure that there is no Muktzoh on the table. Therefore he should not place the candles on the tablecloth.

(4) A flame will be required for both nights of Yom Tov for Hadlokas Haneros. One should make sure to light a flame on Erev Shabbos which will last throughout Shabbos and the first day of Yom Tov so that it will be available for lighting on the second night of Yom Tov in chutz la'aretz.

(5) If one will need medicines on Pesach, one should first consult the relevant kosher l'Pesach lists before purchasing them. If the medicine is not listed as kosher l'Pesach the doctor may know of an adequate alternative that is on the list. . . . A Sha'aloh should be asked.13 Sometimes only the sweetening agent in liquid medicines is the problem. . . .

(6) Some have a Minhag to renew the Eruv Chatzeros before Pesach. One should use a Matzoh for this and not Chometz.14

(7) The last opportunity for instructing the Rov to sell one's Chometz is on Friday.

(8) Bearing in mind that Shacharis on Erev Pesach is very early, one should set one's alarm clock accordingly.

(9) Prepare baby nappies for Yom Tov use if necessary in order to avoid problems of kore'ah and tofer.

(10) One must make sure that the following has been carried out before Shabbos:

a) Hafroshas Trumos and Ma'asros from E. Yisroel produce.

b) Hafroshas Challoh from any Challos or Matzos if required.15

Friday Preparations Lekovod Yom Tov

1) Washing one's body.

2) Immersing in a Mikvoh.

3) Haircut l'kovod Yom Tov.

Preparations for Seder

This year it is especially important to prepare everything before Seder Night for the following two reasons:

Firstly, because we have less time available for the Seder itself due to davening Maariv only with Nacht and not before. . . Secondly, due to the Issur of Hachonoh from Shabbos for the day after, one cannot prepare on Shabbos itself for Seder which takes place on Motze Shabbos.

a) Check Matzos for K'fulos and select the required amount of Shleimos. According to many Poskim this is forbidden on Shabbos [due to Meleches Borer]. On Seder Night, however, it is permissible according to the Mishnoh Beruroh.

b) Roast the zero'a.

c) Eggs for the seder plate and meal should be cooked or roasted. They should be left in their shell.

d) Prepare Charoses.

e) Prepare the saltwater.

f) Have a washed and ironed kittel ready.

g) Prepare the Sederplate.

h) Prepare cushions.

i) Bring bags for Matzos and Afikomon. It is advisable to put the correct amount of Matzoh and Maror inside small bags before Betzi'as Hapas. Thereby he will save himself the need to estimate the correct size of the pieces after recital of Brochos. [However, the Ba'al Haseder still gives out to everybody a little piece of his Matzo Shlemoh due to the general Mitzvo to partake of Lechem Mishno.]

j) Towels and Kelim for Netilas Yoda'im may be prepared if desired.

k) Prepare the required number of Kosos. One should make sure that the Kosos can hold a Revi'is. A Revi'is is defined as 86 c.c. according to Horav Chaim Noeh and the Mishnoh Beruroh or alternatively 150 c.c. according to the Noda Biyehudoh and Chazon Ish. Children may certainly rely even lekatchilohon the small measurement.

l) Kasher any vessels requiring kashering. One may kasher on Friday even after the fifth hour unlike the Burning of Chometz which should lekatchiloh take place before the fifth hour.21

m) Open wine bottles, grape juice bottles, tins and bags.

n) If one uses lettuce for Maror , check it carefully for insects. "Aleh Katif Produce" is highly recommended as it does not require a visual inspection. It does, however, need to be washed well. After inspection it is advisable to store the lettuce in a cold place. Care should be taken that leaves at the bottom of bowl do not remain 24 hours submerged in water because they may become unfit for Mitzvas Maror. ("Kovush Kimevushal") This can happen without being noticed simply because water often drips from washed leaves and collects at the bottom of the bowl. It is advisable to dry the Maror so that it it does not become soggy.

o) Prepare Karpas and if you use radishes, they should be examined to ensure that they are free of infestation.

p) It is a good idea if practically possible to lay the Seder- table before Shabbos with Haggodos, Kosos etc. on each place, so that one can start the Seder immediately upon returning from Ma'ariv. Seats, bottles of wine and grape juice should ideally be prepared before Shabbos. If the horseradish was not ground before Shabbos, it may be ground on Yomtov by employing a deviation from the normal method e.g. after grinding the Maror falls onto the table and not into a receptacle. Alternatively the grater could be held in the inverse way. If the horseradish was ground it before Shabbos it must be stored in a well-sealed container so that its sharpness does not evaporate.23

9) An Etzoh for those who did not prepare the Sedertable before Shabbos: . . . one could genuinely decide to conduct a Mock-Seder for a child on Shabbos. It would then be entirely permissible to prepare on Shabbos the Seder-Plate, the cushions, chairs, Haggodos etc. for the sake of this "demonstration". Of course one may not do any Meloches . . .

Burning Chometz

10) He burns the Chometz on Friday [this year]. It is correct to burn it before the end of the fifth Sho'oh Zemanis.24 He does not say "Kol Chamiroh" after the burning but instead he will say it on Shabbos morning. 25 Similarly the Tefilloh "Yehi Rotzon" should be said on Shabbos despite the fact that generally we do not say private Techinos on Shabbos.26 Although a person may eat Chometz after the Bedikoh and S'refoh, he should take care that it does not become dispersed in the house. Accordingly, he should set aside one particular place on Friday and Shabbos for eating Chometz.

Type of Food to be prepared for Shabbos:

11) For Shabbos it is correct to bake and cook such foods which do not contain any Chometz. They are cooked and baked in Pesach utensils and ovens27.

It is ossur lekatchiloh to pour hot food (which was cooked in Pesach utensils) from Pesach utensils directly into chometz utensils.28 One should also avoid splashing from Chometz utensils onto Pesach utensils. Similarly, one should not remove hot food with a Pesachdig spoon from a Pesachtig pot and use a spoon to put it into a chometz utensil.

One should rather wait until the food has cooled down below yad soledes bo (about 42-45C). Alternatively one may pour from the Pesachdig utensils into a Keli Sheni of Pesach utensils and from there into chometz utensils.

12) If he cannot cook in Pesach utensils, he can cook in Chometz utensils. One should, however, not cook food which tends to stick to the walls of the utensils.

13) One should prepare not more than the amount of Challos which are needed for the Shabbos meals. In this way one will not be left with any unnecessary chometz.29 On the other hand he should make sure that every participant of the meals receives at least a little more than a kebeitzoh of Challoh. (50 c.c.) 30 Left over Challoh should be discarded in the way explained below.

14) If one prefers not to use Chometz utensils for Shabbos the Shabbos meals can be prepared in the following way:

Challos are eaten at the beginning of the meal, then the mouth and hands are cleaned, one shakes off one's clothes [without using a clothesbrush].

The tablecloth is changed from Chometzdig to Pesachdig or, alternatively, one carries on the meal at another Pesachtig table. Thus the meal continues with Pesachdig foods and without Challoh. It does not matter that he commenced the meal in one room and continued in another room.31

15) It is most practical to use disposable cutlery and plates. . . . However, a Sha'aloh should be asked whether this involves an infringement of Kavod Shabbos. Certainly, the cup for Kiddush should lekatchiloh not be a disposable cup.32

Friday Night

16) The Matzos Mitzvoh (i.e. those Matzos which are designated for the Sedernight Mitzvos) are Muktzoh.

17) All other Matzos are not Muktzoh although it is forbidden (and not merely a Minhag) to eat them on Shabbos by day because it is Erev Pesach. Nevertheless they are not Muktzoh because they may be given to very young children.34 A piece of Matzoh may also be joined together with a Challoh to make up "Lechem Mishnoh". 35 [Great care should be taken that in such a case they are wrapped up properly so that the Challoh does not come into contact with the Matzoh.]

Shabbos Meal

18) Many people who have either fillings or false teeth do not eat hot chometz food within 24 hours of the Sof Z'man Achilas Chometz or, at least, within 24 hours of Pesach itself. . . . This also includes not eating a Dovor Charif together with Chometz, for example, horseradish together with Gefilte Fish made with chometz Matzo meal.37

19) The Dilemma as to what "bread" to use for the Se'udos Shabbos: As it is ossur to eat Matzoh on Erev Pesach, and yet there is an obligation to have "bread-based" meals on Shabbos, the question arises whether on may use some form of Matzoh Ashiroh or Matzoh meal etc.

Normal Matzos: It is completely ossur to use Matzoh for the morning meal. . . . our Minhag is in accordance with those Poskim who forbid this even on Friday night39.

Children who do not yet understand Sippur Yetziyas Mitzrayim are permitted to eat any Matzoh (made with flour and water).40 It is a good idea to give them Matzoh only. This ensures that they will not disperse Challoh in the house.

Matzoh Ashiroh: Although early and prominent Sefardi Poskim allow Matzoh baked with eggyolk instead of water (Matzoh Ashiroh) the Remoh forbids this and this is certainly the Mnhag of all Ashkenazi Kehillos. However, even many Ashkenazi Poskim allow consumption of Matzoh Ashiroh before the Sof Z'man Achiloh. Nevertheless, it appears that the prevalent Minhag amongst all Ashkenazi Kehillos is to refrain from it even before Sof Z'man Achiloh.41

Cooked Matzoh: Many Poskim allow eating of cooked Matzoh on Erev Pesach. Accordingly, one may consume Matzoh which had been cooked at least a short time in a Keli Rishon i.e. a pot cooking on the fire. . . . It seems that one may rely on this at least with regard to older children . . . A Sha'aloh should be asked.

The generally accepted Minhag is to use normal Challos. This requires extra precaution with regard to

a) finishing in good time before Sof Z'man Achilas Chometz.

b) disposing of the leftovers in the correct way, . . .

20) Changing from room to room: The Kiddush must be recited in the room in which he later eats the Challoh (because of the Din of Ein Kiddush eloh bemokom Se'udoh). It is advisable to continue the meal with Pesach food rather than Chometz food. This may be done by moving from one table to another within the same room. It may also be done by moving from one room designated for challoh to another room which is designated for Pesach Food.44

21) If one continued the meal in a different room, one should return for Bentching to the room in which the Challoh was eaten.45 If this would be very inconvenient one may bentch in the second room provided that

a) one can see from the Bentching place the place where the Challoh was eaten and

b) that both rooms are in the same house.46

22) . . . no new Brochoh is recited over the Pesachdig food.47

23) Often people choose to eat the Challoh in very small or inconvenient places. A person should be aware that the Mitzvoh of Kavod Shabbos applies to this part of the Se'udoh and requires a modicum of comfort. 48 . . . If one has no other reasonable option, at least the following condition must be kept:

a) In the Friday night meal, the place of eating must be lit up.

b) It is ossur to pour liquids onto grass e.g. the drink may not spill onto the ground. One should avoid transporting a cup of drink over grass unless there is a tray below the cup.

c) Generally it is ossur to sweep the garden, because of the Gezeroh of Ashvuyei Gumos.50


Tefilloh On Shabbos Morning:

24) Davening takes place early in the morning to allow enough time to finish the Shabbos meal before Sof Zman Achiloh.

The Shabbos Meal by Day:

25) Some refrain from eating Kitniyos in the morning meal before Sof Zman Achiloh 55 but most Poskim permit it without hesitation.56

26) To divide the meal into two meals: Many Mehadrin divide up the morning Meal into two meals as follows: They have a meal with two Challos and then bentch. They then make a short break by going for a walk or learning (in order to avoid the problem of Brochoh she'einoh tzrichoh). This is followed by another meal with two complete challos (i.e. make again Hamotzi and bentch after the meal). This enables them to fulfill Shalosh S'udos with Challos, according to those Poskim who allow Shalosh Se'udos to take place before Chatzos Hayom. 57 This is not an obligation but merely a Hidur.

27) In case of severe delay: . . .

28) Cleaning Teeth before Sof Z'man Achiloh: One should brush one's teeth before Sof Zman Achiloh in order to remove any remaining Chometz particles. One may not use a wet toothbrush due to Issur Sechitoh 59. It may be used without water and one may rinse one's mouth first prior to brushing the teeth. The use of toothpaste is forbidden. 60 Some Poskim hold that because of Uvdoh Dechoil one should set aside a special toothbrush for Shabbos 61 but other Poskim are lenient in this matter.62 It is permissible to use a toothpick 63 and dental floss. Dental floss may not be cut on Shabbos.

According to the strict letter of the Din it may perhaps not be necessary to clean the toothbrush of its Chometz particles after using it 64. Nevertheless it is advisable to do so.

One should remove braces or false teeth and clean them thoroughly. Some conduct themselves to pour hot water onto them from a Keli Rishon after refraining for 24 hours from eating hot Chometz. This may also be done on Shabbos itself.65


Disposal of Chometz after the Meal:

29) Utensils: If one ate in Chometz utensils and there is some chometz left over in the utensils, one may not rinse them in the normal way because this would constitute Hachonoh (from Shabbos for after Shabbos). . . . the crumbs should be wiped off with one's hand or disposable tissues. Then they should be flushed down the toilet. 66

However, if one uses disposable plates and cutlery, one may even rinse them. The reason is that because they will be discarded. Therefore rinsing off the crumbs does not involve any issur of preparing on Shabbos for after Shabbos.

One should then stow away the Chometz utensils and the Chometz tablecloth (if they are not disposable).

30) Crumbs on floor: If crumbs remain on the floor after the meal (due to falling down during the meal or due to shaking out the tablecloth onto the floor) it is not absolutely necessary according to the strict letter of the Din, to sweep the house with a broom in order to remove the crumbs. However, it is preferable to do so. A carpetsweeper should not be used. 67 One should then dispose of the crumbs as described above. [Since it is quite possible that some crumbs might be left over in the broom, it is Hidur to wrap the broom with a disposable cloth before sweeping with it and then shake out the cloth thoroughly or dispose of it.] 31) One should shake out the clothes which were worn during the Chometz meal.

A brush may not be used.

Bedikas Chometz also requires that the pockets are checked or emptied out, because one may have inadvertently put some chometz into them.

32) After the meal, one should shake out the tablecloth in order to remove all Chometz crumbs.

It is best if one can shake all crumbs into the toilet. The toilet must be flushed before the Sof Zman, otherwise the Chazon Ish deems the Chometz not to have been disposed of.

33) Disposal of Crumbs Summary:

Crumbs from vessels, tablecloths, broom, toothbrush can be disposed of, in one of the following ways:

a) flushing down the toilet

b) pouring it down the sink and pouring a generous amount of bleach down the sink in order to render the crumbs unfit for consumption.

c) putting the Chometz into a container and pouring a liquid over it which renders the Chometz unfit for eating. There is then no need to dispose of the Chometz as it is inedible and no longer considered to be Chometz.

Other less practical methods include:

d) giving it as a present to a Nochri. However one may not instruct him explicitly to carry it out into the R'shus Horabim.69 . . .

e) If carrying into the street is permitted (due to an Eruv) one may put one's Chometz into the street and declare it Hefker.

f) putting the Chometz amongst Chometz utensils and having it included in the Sale of Chometz. However, one can only do this if the Rov's sale document stipulates explicitly that the Sale will take effect on Shabbos at a time by which one has already put away the Chometz and utensils71 i.e. first he puts away the Chometz and only afterwards the sale will take effect. [Many sale documents, however, stipulate that the Sale takes effect on Erev Shabbos shortly before Shabbos in order to avoid the Machlokes Haposkim as to whether a stipulation specifying that the sale takes effect on Shabbos falls under the Issur of Mekach Umemkar BeShabbos.]

34) He must remember to say Kol Chamiroh ....... in good time before the end of the Sho'oh Chamishis and make sure that he understands and thinks of its meaning. Especially with regard to widows who own all their food as opposed to married women they need to be reminded of this and they should recite it in a language which they can understand.


35) Shalosh Se'udos: In the afternoon one should eat another meal, consisting preferably of Mezonos food e.g. Kneidlech. Although Kneidlech are made of matzo meal, the Issur of eating Matzoh on Erev Pesach does not apply to them.72 . . . If Mezonos food is not available, he should eat meat, fish, vegetables or at least fruit.74

It is preferrable to daven Minchoh before Shalosh Se'udos. If this is difficult, one may eat Shalosh Se'udos before Minchoh as long as the Z'man of Minchoh Ketanoh has not yet arrived.75

36) Eating after the beginning of the Tenth Hour: A person should not eat any Mezonos food after the beginning of the 10th hour (z'manis). One may eat other foods e.g. meat, fish eggs, fruit in moderate amounts making sure that one will still have a good appetite for the Matzas Mitzvoh.76 Even if a Mezonos meal was started at the permitted time i.e. before the Tenth Hour one must stop eating Mezonos food as soon as the tenth hour arrives.77

37) Preperation on Shabbos for Yomtov: It is forbidden to prepare from Shabbos for Yomtov. Therefor, one may not prepare the Seder table (e.g. lay out the Haggodos, set out the chairs etc.) before Motzo'eh Shabbos. It is permissible, however, to ask a Nochri to prepare it. [The Issur of Hachonoh does not apply to matters which are of benefit both on Shabbos and after Shabbos, e.g. tidying up the room if he benefits from that on Shabbos itself.]

38) Minchoh: A person may daven Minchoh from half an hour after Chatzos onwards.

39) Sleeping: Sleeping on Shabbos in order to feel refreshed for Seder night does not fall under the Issur of Hachonoh from Shabbos for after Shabbos. However he may not say explicitly the reason why he is going to sleep.78

40) Changing to Yomtov Clothes: A person may not change from Shabbos clothes into Yomtov clothes before Motzo'eh Shabbos. This is due to the Issur of Hachonoh and a possible Zilzul in Kovod Shabbos. 79 If on Shabbos afternoon one removed one's clothes in order to rest, it is permitted to put on Yom Tov clothes when getting up although it is before Motzo'eh Shabbos. On Shabbos morning after eating Chometz some may wish to change their suit. It would be permitted to put on Yom Tov clothes.80

41) Reciting the Order of Korban Pesach: Some have a Minhag to recite the Seder of Korban Pesach on Erev Pesach. This Minhag applies even when Erev Pesach falls on Shabbos. [The Shechitas Korban Pesach took place on Erev Pesach even when it fell on Shabbos as the bringing of the Korban Pesach took precedence over the Issur Melochoh of Shabbos.] Similarly the Minhag to say the Haggodoh from "Avodim Hoyinu" until lechaper al kol avonosenu also applies on this Shabbos Hagodol although it is also Erev Pesach.


Maariv and Meleches Yomtov:

42) During Ma'ariv Shmoneh Esre, "Vatodieinu..." is added.

43) Women who do not daven Ma'ariv, or men who forgot to say "Vatodi'einu" and have to do a Melochoh e.g. cook or kindle the Yomtov lights, must first say: "Boruch Hamavdil bein Kodesh Lekodesh." Some recite the complete text of the Birkas Havdoloh without the names of Hashem.81

43) The order of Kidush is "Yakne'haz". Most women who have the Minhag to say Kiddush together with the Ba'al Habayis on Seder night do so even this year although in general they avoid reciting Havdoloh. Regarding the B'rochoh "Borei M'orei Ho'esh", a Sha'aloh should be asked.83

44) In the Haggodoh in Birkas "Asher Go'alonu" most Poskim advise that this year one should change the order from venochal shom min haPesochim umin haZevochim to: venochal shom min haZevochim umin haPesochim. This is due to the fact that the Korban Chagigoh was not brought when Erev Pesach fell on Shabbos. 84 Some Poskim hold that the order should remain unchanged but this is a minority view.85

Bi'ur Ma'asros

45) The correct time for the Mitzvoh: This year the Mitzvoh of Bi'ur Ma'asros applies. According to some Poskim he has to have fulfilled it by the 7th day of Pesach. Other Poskim hold that it applies on Erev Pesach at the latest.86 The Minhag is in accordance with the latter view.87

46) Definition of the Mitzvoh: He has to separate Terumos and Ma'asros where applicable. For those in Chutz Lo'oretz the following Halochoh is most relevant: A person is obligated to destroy any coin upon which Ma'aser Sheni or Rivai was transferred; prior to that he may transfer the Kedushoh from a big valuable coin onto a smaller one. The destruction is accomplished in one of the following ways:

a) He grinds the coin into "dust" and throws the dust to the wind.

b) He throws the coin into the sea. Possibly, throwing it into a completely inaccessible part of the river is equivalent to throwing it into the sea; a Sha'aloh should be asked.

c) He throws the coin into a river after grinding it.88

d) He transfers the Kedushoh from the coin onto a food and then dissolves the food and flushes it down the sink. Generally, many people have used sugar; there may be some marginal advantage in using a food which has not been washed in its production e.g. ground nuts.89


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