Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Davening on Behalf of a Non-Jew

A Guest Post by Rafi G

The Director of Lev Malka, Rav Aharon Aberman asked Rav Elyashiv a shailoh if he is allowed to daven on behalf of a non-Jew at the Kotel. A non-Jew, a Christian (religious presumably and based on the article I will assume Catholic) once donated to his organization for sick children with cancer, and he recently contacted them offering another donation. The condition he set was that they daven for him at the Kotel to succeed in his business.

Rav Aberman was uncomfortable with the condition and asked Rav Elyashiv if he is allowed to or not.

Rav Elyashiv answered that one is allowed to daven on behalf of a non-jew who believes in the God of the jews, and is not an idol-worshipper. One cannot daven on behalf of a non-jew who is an idol-worshiper. (source: TOG)

Personally I would not have thought of asking. I would have assumed that because of Darkei Shalom, if asked specifically, one is allowed to daven for a goy. Differentiating between an idol-worshiper and a non-idol worshiper is an interesting distinction, and makes me think that the goy in question was a Catholic, as we consider Catholics to be idol worshipers, while other Christians are not necessarily idol worshipers (for them to be Christians - for a Jew it would be).

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