Friday, October 14, 2005

Yom Tov pet hates

Whilst I love being in Toronto for the chaggim, and also really like a lot about my parents' shul, the shul has two seemingly contradictory rules which drive me crazy and completely ruin davening for me. On the one hand, you're not allowed to repeat any word of davening -- so lots of favorite RH/Yom Kippur tunes are ruled out and others are ruined with 'oy yoy yoys' where the rest of the world has words (eg. vechol ma'aminim -- must say exactly that, not, G-d forbid, 'vechol, vechol, vechol'). On the other hand, they also insist that mitpallelim say every single stanza of a song to themselves before it's sung -- so you can never get into a song because it's so cut up (and indeed, whilst everyone says the lines, most people only end up singing half-heartedly if at all). As a result, the bits of davening which are normally the most uplifting seem to me completely deflated.
The first of these minhagim is apparently a well-known row between rabbis and chazzanim everywhere. The second minhag I've never seen anywhere else (it ruins Lecha Dodi each Friday night as well). Anyone else's shul do this?

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