Every year, we “spring forward” and change the clocks to day light savings time. In many communities, people “make Shabbos early” during the spring and summer months when nightfall is relatively late and they would prefer to eat their Shabbos night meal at an earlier hour, to have a bit more after-supper time to learn Torah, go over the sedra, read, go for a walk, play with the children/grandchildren, etc. We are certain that you are aware of some of the halachic points that one must keep in mind when it comes to “making Shabbos early.”
If you are looking for information to help you explain the dynamics of “making early Shabbos” to your congregation or to those who only recently began keeping Shabbos, we encourage you to read the detailed article by Rabbi Asher Benzion Buchman, entitled, The Early Shabbos? The article, which first appeared in the Hakirah Journal and can be downloaded free and in its entirety, takes the reader through all of the issues and delves into the opinions of the major halachic decisors.
If you are looking for a practical guide that literally spells out in plain English the various halachic and hashkafic issues behind “making early Shabbos,” you need to look no more!
The Essential Guide to Understanding Early Shabbos, is authored by the Educational Director of the OU’s Israel Center, Mr. Phil Chernofsky (see our post: Discover Why Torah Tidbits is a Great Resource). Mr. Chernofsky is a master at clearly summarizing the weekly Torah portion or issues such as Kiddush Levana and more! In this guide, he has done a wonderful job – and it’s certainly one that you may want to print, include in your shul newsletter, and forward to or share with a congregant who is looking for a quick yet meaningful summary of the various aspects that one should be aware of when it comes to making “early Shabbos”.
Best of all, this guide also includes a sheet that has Friday night Kiddush, Shema, and a chart to count Sefiras HaOmer (both of which need to be recited after nightfall).
To read The Guide to Early Shabbat! on your mobile device click here.