Sunday, January 15, 2012
The Pecking Order
Today was unusual in that I did not once daven from the amud (the person who leads the prayers). For each of the three prayer services, Shacharit (morning), Mincha (afternoon) and Ma'ariv (evening), a person who had a Yahrzeit led the service. Yahrzeit is the anniversary of the death of a loved one, usually a parent. A person who has Yahrzeit for a parent would have precedence over a Yahrzeit for a spouse, sibling or, God-forbid, a child. A Yahrzeit for a parent trumps all other che'uvim (obligations) to daven from the amud. Next comes, I believe, Yahrzeit for a spouse, sibling or child. Then comes a person in Shloshim (the first 30 days after death). Next comes a person such as I: a regular avel (mourner) during his (or perhaps in a nonorthdox service, her) year of mourning. As a person in Shloshim, I davened regularly, a position I wasn't very comfortable with in the beginning but became more acclimated to as time went on. Now I am, so to speak, in the rotation or daveners. The meaning of this pecking order and the che'uv (obligation) I leave for another post.