Rosh Yeshiva Responds
Rabbi Linzer answers halakhic questions from rabbis and community members

5 11, 2023

Reciting Berakhot on Reading Megillat Rut From a Klaf

November 5th, 2023|Chol Hamoed, Moadim, Orach Chayim, Pesach, Purim, Shavuot, Sukkot|

QUESTION

Maryland

We are reading Megillat Rut from a klaf for the first time this year. The Ba’al Koreh told me he would like to say the berakhot of mikrah megillah and shehechiyanu. I thought this was not widely practiced and I was wondering your guidance on the matter.

ANSWER

I am fine making the berakhot when read from a klaf. I think what is not widely practiced is to read it from a klaf. My sense is that the places that do so, do it with a brakha. (See Rema SA OH 390:9,

1 05, 2023

Whiskey sold after Pesach

May 1st, 2023|Moadim, Pesach|

https://pixabay.com/photos/alcohol-drink-glasses-beverage-428319/

QUESTION

Ohio

When whiskey is sold to gentiles for פסח, does it wipe away any labelling of it as חמץ שעבר עליו הפסח? E.g. when a Bourbon had been created by Jews (and unquestionably is חמץ שעבר עליו הפסח), but is then sold to gentiles, does it lose its status as חמץ שעבר עליו הפסח? And, if not, is it still permissible to drink?

Here are three real-life situations I have encountered with regard to this question:
1) My gentile neighbor offers me to drink of his own bottles of a Bourbon that had been

4 04, 2023

Eating Eggs on Pesach from Chickens Fed with Chametz Feed

April 4th, 2023|Pesach|

QUESTION

Maryland, USA

A congregant has their own chickens in the backyard that produce eggs. The chicken feed has wheat. I assume that the eggs would not be a problem because of zeh va’zeh gorem זה וזה גורם (some of the feed is not chametz—see SA YD 87:11), but I assume there is an issur of owning chametz on the feed and getting benefit from chametz if the owner owns his chickens. So the solution could

2 04, 2023

Managing Environmental Concerns: Glass Dishes and Glass Serving Plates from Goodwill for Pesach

April 2nd, 2023|Hechsher Keilim, Moadim, Orach Chayim, Pesach|

QUESTION

Denver, CO

It seems environmentally wasteful to buy a new set of dishes to be used one week per year. Would it be acceptable to buy glass dishes and glass serving plates from goodwill to use for Pesach?

ANSWER

While I think there are cases where you can assume that glass isn’t boleya/that it is kasherable, we tend to be quite strict around these things over Pesach, and the environmental cost of buying one set of dishes for a one-week-a-year use seems to me to

2 04, 2023

Flying back to Chutz La’Aretz from Israel on Second Day of Yom Tov

April 2nd, 2023|Land of Israel / State of Israel, Moadim, Orach Chayim, Pesach|

QUESTION


New York

If someone was in Israel for Pesach and only keeping one day of chag, would they be able to fly back to America on Yom Tov Sheni, once you leave Israel?
Does it matter if you don’t land until chag is over in chutz laaretz?
How would you handle a layover if it’s permitted?

ANSWER

If an Israeli or American who lives a good part of the year in Israel and can reasonably be called a בן ארץ ישראל—ben eretz yisrael comes to the US on Yom Tov Sheni (second day of Yom Tov), they can treat the day as chol ha’moed as

28 03, 2023

Switching Pesach China Dishes Not Used for 12 Months from Meat to Dairy

March 28th, 2023|Hechsher Keilim, Orach Chayim, Pesach|

QUESTION

Jerusalem, IL

A family that uses their (flieshig) grandparent’s Pesach china has gone vegetarian. They would like to turn the china dairy. Obviously, they haven’t been used since last Pesach. Any room for to allow this?

ANSWER

Yes they can. They should kasher through iruy and—when it comes to the tureen and serving dishes and possibly the soup bowls (see below), they should ideally wait 12 months from last fleishig use, which means the Pesach after this. The reason to allow this is:

1. We are only going from fleishig to milkhig, so what is balua (absorbed) is taam heter (permissible flavour) to begin

28 03, 2023

Using Pet Food That is Less Than 50% Chametz on Pesach

March 28th, 2023|Orach Chayim, Pesach|

QUESTION

Denver, CO

Rabbi Linzer, what is your view on using pet food on Pesach that is ta’arovet chametz—less than 50% percent grain—instead of trying to find grain free pet food? This is important to dog owners who find it difficult to switch foods. I understand that the hesitancy on this is whether or not dog food can be classified as nifsal mei’achilat adam (not fit for human consumption). It seems to me that even though it may be made tolerable to

28 03, 2023

Kashering a Dutch Oven for Pesach Used for Both Cooking and Baking

March 28th, 2023|Hechsher Keilim, Orach Chayim, Pesach|

QUESTION

Chicago, IL

Kashering question—this Dutch Oven is used as a pot, but also upside down to make bread. How should it be kashered for Pesach? Do we follow it’s majority usage (רוב תשמישו) as a pot, and therefore require hagalah? Or do we do libun for the smaller piece since it’s it used for baking but only a lid for bishul?

ANSWER

I have a hard time considering this rov tashmisho. I don’t think that rov tashmisho is measured by 51%. If using it

16 01, 2023

Eating on Ta’anit Bechorot After a Women’s Siyum Masechet

January 16th, 2023|Orach Chayim, Pesach, Ta'anit Bechorot, Talmud Torah, Women's Torah Learning|

QUESTION

PARIS, FRANCE

Kvod Ha-Rav,
I teach Gemara (Pesachim) to a group of women. We plan to make a siyum that we would like to set Erev Pesach. Can the men who will attend consider this siyum as ‘סיום בכורות’ (the siyum of the firstborn) instead of fasting ?

ANSWER
Yes. Women making a siyum on learning equally warrants a seudat mitzvah.

31 03, 2022

Starting Seder Earlier

March 31st, 2022|Kiddush, Seudah, Havdalah, Marriage and Family, Orach Chayim, Pesach, Uncategorized|

QUESTION

Chicago, IL

What is the earliest time for the first cup for the start of the seder

ANSWER

I would definitely follow the Gra (Biur HaGra on SA OH 261:2; MB ad. loc., no. 23) here and start as early as 14 minutes after sunset. 

The only reason not to start earlier than tzeit is the Terumat HaDeshen (137) – then paskened by the Shulchan Aruch OC 472:1 – who holds that just as matzah can only be at (full)