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What do I do if I missed a Yahrtzeit?

by Rabbi Shlomo Chein

  

Library » Life Cycle » Death » Yahrtzeit | Subscribe | What is RSS?


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If the yahrtzeit was remembered but Kaddish was missed because one could not find a Minyan or one was traveling on that day, Kaddish can be said at evening services that night (which is technically after the Yahrtzeit).1

If, however, one completely forgot about the Yahrtzeit, he should make up the missed Yahrtzeit and Kaddish by reciting the Kaddish and following all customs associated with a Yahrtzeit on another day.2

Footnotes

  • 1. Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 26:21
  • 2. Sefer Kol Bo laws of Aveilus page 394. See there for an additional custom followed by some: to make up for the forgotten Yahrtzeit they say Kaddish on the day before, and on the actual day of all future Yahrtzeits.

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Kaddish
A prayer sanctifying G-d's name which is sprinkled throughout the daily prayers and is recited by the leader of the services. This prayer is also recited by mourners during the first year of mourning, and on the anniversary of the death.
Minyan
A quorum consisting of ten adult male Jews. A minyan is necessary to recite the kaddish or to publicly read from the Torah scroll.
yahrtzeit
The (Jewish calendar) anniversary of a person's death.