Based on New Info: STOP ALL MINYANIM – Even Outside Minyanim!


    by Rabbi Yair Hoffman for

    Based upon new information in the most recent Journal of the American Medical Association, it is clear that



    We have made a colossal error in how we have responded to the COVID-19 virus based upon incorrect information from the authorities.

    Previously, we assumed that distancing ourselves 6 feet away from others offered us safety.  The latest results from a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) study, published in the most recent edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), however, tells us otherwise.  The gap should be 26 feet.

    Please do not ignore this information or dismiss it as alarmist. This author has lost 3 friends to the virus – with a family member in critical condition.  Just this past Shabbos in teh United States, the death toll rose by over 1000 and 11 people from the Torah Kehillah passed away.

    There are even more immediate implications to this new information:

    It is a grave danger to attend any minyan, bris, or Simcha because of the sheer number of infections out there and the possibility of getting infected or giving it to others.

    The study found that viral droplets expelled both in coughs and sneezes travels at speeds that range between 22 miles per hour to 68 miles an hours.  This translates to 33 feet per second and 100 feet per second.  The speed rate depends upon the strength of the original expulsion and how warm and moist the atmosphere is.  The study can be viewed at  The corresponding author of the study is Lydia Bourouiba, PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    Essentially, an invisible cloud is created within the atmosphere (both an inside atmosphere and an outside atmosphere) that can hit neighboring people up to 27, yes, 27 feet away.

    Droplets can even be suspended in the air for several hours.  Indoor ventilation systems that do not have cross ventilation can create turbulent clouds of air, changing the direction of the droplets, that can infect others as well.

    The studies authors urged that the social distancing requirements perhaps be updated and changed to some four times the previous recommendation.

    There is a concept in halacha called, “chamira sakanasa m’issurah – a danger must be viewed more stringently than a prohibition (e.g. a food).”  We are careful to ensure that we only eat from kosher shechita, cholov yisroel, and no bugs in our food – this is even a more stringent matter.  Even if there is a doubt as toa sakana we should be stringent.

    Further halachic implications of this study are that no one should venture outside without an adequately protective mask – where he or she will be exposed to others who may carry the virus – even in a supermarket.

    Health care workers must wear personal protective equipment even 26 feet away from infected patients.

    Even mechiras Chometz should be done online this year on account of the risk.  If anyone needs to do a mechirah online, email the author below.  The mechira is done with an araiv kablan, six kinyanim, and done safely.

    The author can be reached at [email protected]

    כל המנינים צריכים להיעצר על סמך מידע חדש


    מאת הרב יאיר הופמן

    על סמך מידע חדש ביומן של האיגוד הרפואי האמריקני, ברור כי כל המנינים צריכים להיעצר באופן מיידי הן אלו שבתוך בנינים הן אלו שבחוץ – הן בארצות הברית הן בארץ ישראל והן בכל מקום שישי זיהום – בלי יוצא מן הכלל.  זה על חשבון המידע החדש הנוגע לסכנת ההדבקה ולהדבקת אחרים.

    כולנו עשינו שגיאה אדירה כיצד הגבנו לנגיף הקורונה על סמך מידע שגוי.

    בעבר הנחנו שמרחק של שני מטרים מציע לנו ביטחון.  אך התוצאות שפורסם על ידי מחקר של  מכון טכנולוגי של מסצ’וסטד במהדורה האחרונה של איגוד הרפואי האמריקני אומרים לנו אחרת. המרווח צריך להיות ט’ מטר ולא פחות.

    המחקר מצא כי טיפות ויראליות המגורשות הן בשיעול והן בעיטוש נעות במהירות של 11 מטר בשנייה עד ל 33 מטר בשנייה.  קצב המהירות תלוי בחוזק הגירוש המקורי ועד כמה האווירה חמימה ולחה.  ניתן לראות את המחקר בכתובת

    בעיקרו של דבר, נוצר ענן בלתי נראה בתוך האווירה (גם בפנים בנין וגם מחוץ לבנין) שיכול לפגוע בשכנים עד למרחק של 9 מטר משם

    ניתן אפילו להשעות טיפות באוויר למשך מספר שעות.

    וזה ממש הצלת נפשות כי מצילים בזה את האדם. רק בשבת שעברה כאן בנוי יורק 11 אנשים מקהילתינו נפטרו ר”ל ואלף בארצות הברית ביום אחד ר”ל. וידוע מה שכתב המחבר בש”ע י”ד סימן קט”ז ס’ ה’ דחמירא סכנתא מאיסורא ועיין גם בתפארת ישראל בחולין פ”ג מ”ה שגם אסור בס”ס של סכנה

    .על עובדי שירותי הבריאות ללבוש ציוד מגן אישי אפילו במרחק של 9 מטרים מחולים נגועים

    בברכת והסירות מחלה מקרבך

    יאיר הופמן

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    1. To:you Details

      Enough is enough. .when will they ever learn. Our orthodox Jews who refuse to stop gathering in large groups such as for weddings are killing each other and others with the virus . Did we not lose enough during the holocaust? Perhaps no one wants to speak up but it is a mitzvah to save lives rabbi dr. Bernhard Rosenberg

    2. On top of that , outside minyanom may cause chillul Hashem. They are noticing, videoing, and talking about in derogatory terms. However spread out the mispallelim are, it is a an obvious thorn in their eyes and no good can come out of it. Please stop.

    3. This alleged virus will cause anti Semitic behavior. This is no time to Daven. If rabbonim would of allowed internet then the yidden would know something. The majority of us are guurnitvasseyers.

    4. Disagree with me if you want, but the “pious” people who sneak off to minyan thinking g-d will approve are not that much different than suicide bombers who believe there will be a party waiting for them in heaven. Seeing how reckless frum people are being now – you can finally understand the logic behind suicide bombers and how they actually believe what they believe.

    5. “no one should venture outside without an adequately protective mask – where he or she will be exposed to others who may carry the virus”
      The other benefit of the mask is that YOU won’t expose others.
      You may have it but not show symptoms.

    6. The psak of Harav Kanievsky shlit”a comes 10-14 days later than it should have. There is an unconfirmed report on YNET that the Rav only today was told that there is a “mageifa”. Whoever the gabaiim of the Rav are, they bear the responsibility for this tragic delay in forbidding all minyanim.

    7. I know for a fact of minyanim happening in Lakewood and brooklyn and when asked the one in brooklyn told me he took a walk, with a talis for 2 hours?

    8. Yes there are minyanim in Boro park and Flatbush both in shuls and on the streets. But but but for those screaming that it causes ANTI semitism I’m not so sure. Where were these individuals when secular Jewish politicians and groups support same gender marriage. Why are they not afraid of the non Jews being upset. It’s a red herring. I’m not saying its prudent to Daven with a minyan but throwing around anti semitism as a reason is hypocritical. Israel has no problem inciting the Arab and moslem world by making yearly gay parades and today Israeli chareidim don’t even protest other than the kahane followers.

      • I fought lgbt “marriage ” more than you did, I was in Albany for 2 weeks at the time.

        I know you know who I am.
        Stop all minyanim they are ritzicha.

        Btw others who you know who also fought it more than you also said minyanim are an issur gamur.

        Remember only a few weeks ago I told You what was written in romi Cohn’s zl book, you are the same as the Hungarians in the pupa ghetto.

        Remember when the mushchis is given permission to strike even a tzadik gamur like romi Cohn who did more against lgbt than you did can die.

    9. Rabbi, its painfully obvious that you have zero science background, its a unproven theory not conducted in a lab setting and if people use face masks it stops the inhalation.
      My suggestion stick to halacha and not science

    10. I’m looking out my window and I see every third person walking by with their tali’s or tefillin bags. I’m sure they are all not going to a soifer to check their tefillin out. Chassidim will not listen to a litvish gadol because even the chassidishe gadol don’t listen. You don’t believe it look back 17 years ago when Reb Chaim sent message to top chassidisha rebbes to bring out a hundred thousand protesters to protest first jerusalem gay parade. They refused. There was a protest but small mostly by meah shearim types and kahane followers. The chief police then said had there been a hundred thousand protesters like reb Chaim suggested there would be no parade since police could not control so many protesters.

    11. I can say with certainty that Pesach we will make minyanim. After being held up a whole Shabbos now for second week, we won’t go thru a 3 day Pesach like this . Enough is enough . You can’t have the refua worse than the illness

    12. Can the rabbi tell us the distance ladies need to be from the men in an outdoor minyan? Ladies need to daven too! Is 27 feet also the correct distance between men and women for outdoor minyanin, b’sha’as had’chak?

    13. SIT in your houses….you have running have running have heat…you are ahead of the game…learn to cook..get potatoes carrots onions and some fruits and or some cereals and stay at home.

      Make sure you have your meds.

      Cook your own food…dont bring in take out… start cleaning your entire house…get rid of the chometz.

      Purge the garbage from your homes now…TONS OF STUFF YOU HAVE AND NEVER KNEW YOU HAD..GET RID OF IT.

      Air out your homes…keep a window open and make sure you have cross ventilation.

    14. Didn’t the Rav pasken a couple of weeks ago that shuls and yeshivos must stay open?! That was Da’as Torah, which is INFALLIBLE!!!! It has syata dishmaya, and is correct. People rely on daas Torah for medical and financial decisions and even matters of life and death. Does daas Torah change with the updated information in the media?! That means the “daas Torah” was merely “daas adam”, using logic and known information. A well informed goy l’havdil, can give such “daas torah” too.

      • Actually, Daas Torah for medical decisions are to ask the doctors!!! This is basic halachah 101, which every Cheder child should know. We mechalel Shabbas and eat on Yom Kippur if the doctors say there is even SAFEK PIKUACH NEFESH.

      • Pope is infallible. Idea of that there is something called daas torah which is infallible is not much different than idol worship. If you were not sure about this 3 weeks ago, it should be eminently clear today.

      • Don’t leave the burning building while davening unless a Gadol tells you. Let it burn around you and collapse on you but the Gadol is INFALLIBLE even while your lungs fill with smoke. Gedolianity is an interesting religion. In superficial ways, it is like Judaism.

    15. From Modiin Illit in Eretz Israel:
      I am very angry and frustrated that the PSAK of Rav Chaim shlit”a is being twisted and endangering lives.
      His psak is very simple: LISTEN TO THE DOCTORS–period.
      The doctors all have said—WITHOUT EXCEPTION—DAVEN AT HOME; do not make private minyanim.
      Rabbi Hoffman’s article only enhances the psak and the doctors unanimous pleadings: STAY HOME–DAVEN AT HOME.
      From what I have read about Chutz LaAretz, all the rabbis and doctors are saying DAVEN AT HOME!!!
      Why is this simple inyan of Pikuach Nefesh so hard to grasp?? Davening with private minyanim is endangering the lives of possibly THOUSANDS of people!!!

    16. The psak of Moran Shlita is for Bnei Brak. There the mageifa is so wide spread and motzuy that it is not a chashash sakana but korov l’va’aday. In other cities less infected, the psak would not apply. Each place requires it’s own individualized psak. Not “one size fits all”!

      • Anyplace with community spread of the virus (basically every frum community) it is the recommendation of the medical experts to isolate as much as possible as every interaction risks spreading this further. With community spread there is a real danger the medical system can’t handle the cases coming in as well as that many people who can’t fight this will die. Find me a Rabbi who says otherwise and you have found yourself a kofer b’ikkar.

    17. Rav Chaim’s psak clearly applies only to Etetz Yisrael

      As for minyanim here. it is too easy to blame them even if no one can show one person was sick or rlz” niftar because they were part of a minyan, especially minyanim where distancing and sanitizing are enforced.

      Buckle up because at this point there are many people recovered and recovering and there will be no reason they cannot daven with a minyan, go to work etc

    18. it is literal avodah zara to daven with a minyan at this time. There are so many ways one can be a murderer. Even if one doesn’t directly infect someone who dies, if more people end up in the hospital it uses needed supplies and wastes valuable time of hospital staff. That could kill people too. How
      Many charedi rabbanim must we lose before people take this seriously?
      R Chaim himself is very old and frail, why aren’t they protecting him??

      I understand that people enjoy the atmosphere of pesach and the Seder and shul, but if anything hashem is punishing us and not allowing us to go to minyan right now. HE doesn’t NEED our minyan WE DO. Spend time in reflection about why we have done to deserve this. What is really important in my yiddishkeit?

    19. List of Chasidishe Shtibels shuls in Boro Park Still Open
      These are the Rodfim … and Rozchim of Our Brothers & Sisters
      Satmar 52 – 1364 52nd St

      Skver – 4716 17th Ave

      Satmar 49 – 1352 49th St.

      Spinka – 5111 18th Ave

      Bistritz 5202 12th Ave

      Beis Chaim Shia – 4911 17th Ave

      Burshteen 5610 12th Ave

      Rubeditch 1535 49th St.

      Skver 12 – 5323 12th Ave

      Vien – 972 45th St.

      Tarnipal – 163 Parkville Ave

      Koson 906 50th St.

      Sadovna – 1424 51st St.

      Ungvar – 5306-12 16th Ave

      • Stop being such a self prescribed vigilante . Mind your own business .

        Now it happens to be that it’s not the job of a shul to lock it’s doors . A shul is there for the community 24/7. If it’s mispellaim chose not to make a minyan for safety so be it. But who says the shuls need to close and lock ? Why is that their job

    20. I call BS. This is not based on “new information”. Doctors and local and national health departments have been telling us for WEEKS to close shuls. My shul is now in its third week of closure. This is a way to “save face” and deflect responsibility. Cut the BS. The reason Woodmere has the highest infection rate in Nassau county is because of private minyanim and shuls staying open. Sorry, rabbi. This is on YOU. Now you want to blame “incorrect information from authorities”? Punt to the JAMA? No ones buying it, rabbi Hoffman. Shame.

    21. I know of many shuls open but I would not expose them because in many places it’s like fighting shmad. What I mean is that those governments that are atheistic like in New York or Tel Aviv,yidden feel they must give up their lives for even the smallest mitzvah. So many in government here and in Israel are atheistic and support gay parades etc. I see him w so many frum yidden are willing to risk their life for yiddishkeit just as n Holocaust to do mitzvahs.

    22. If this information is correct where is the push to close all supermarkets? They should sell bulk bags of food that will last a few weeks and close their doors to shoppers. How are they any better then outside minyanim? If this is really the case nobody should be leaving their house for anything.

      • psak was for not having minyanim…. the psak was not for supermarkets … that’s why ..
        “If this information is correct where is the push to close all supermarkets?’
        bla bla bla bla ….
        again the psak wasn’t for supermarkets….
        you can daven at home….. but you still need to eat … Mr. Supermarkets Chuchim…

        • Stock up on food and don’t leave your house. YOU can save a life by no leaving your house for the next two weeks. Buy sacks of potatoes for Pesach. You’re not shopping for chicken and other things closer to Pesach CAN save a life.

          If your ok with going into a supermarket (because you feel the need) and not ok with safe distance outdoor minyanim, pisak or not, your a hypocrite.

        • You can buy enough to eat at home too. It’s your choice to go to supermarket . Eat canned tuna .

          To you supermarket is more essential than shul . To many shul is . ( I say at least Pesach )Re these psak. The psak is based on info feed to rabbonim. I don’t quite buy it . And they are plenty silent rabbinim making minyan

    23. It’s seems Lydia Bourouiba had been publishing research in this area for years around that sneezes turn into aerosols. The made the same point in 2016.
      For reasons i am an unsure ( and not educated enough in the field) her hypothesis have not been accepted by mainstream medicine. I would posit, this is not what the author claimed

    24. In my humble opinion I would suggest (with your Doctor’s advice) for anyone that is especially at risk to leave the Tri state area ASAP! It seems like it’s more dangerous to live here then in Kabul.

    25. while i am hold up in a Jerusalem neighborhood on Shabbos night i took a walk (with a MASK ON) ~100m to the left there were 6 outside Minyanim and ~100m to the right there were 3 outdoor Minyanim

    26. BS”D
      Listen, we can all just stop the davening in minyanim and make most people here happy. The reason that there are some people who are very uncomfortable with such a move is that our rights (by “our” I mean citizens — Jew and non-Jew alike) are being hit with Stalinist-like power from the governors of states who put out orders backed by threat of criminal prosecution without any legislative process. All in the name of “public safety.” This is a very dangerous precedent, and one that some frum people are unhappy about. All for a disease that, as scary and real as it is, is so far nothing like the annual flu, never mind the swine flu of 2009. At this point, the “cure” is much worse than the disease (which, again, is admittedly bad). Maybe the covid numbers in the frum communities are worse than the annual flu numbers, but I wonder. The socio/economic disaster that will likely result from the home-isolation — unemployment, depression, spousal abuse, child abuse, etc. (l”a) — can be reasonably expected to far outweigh the effects of covid. Hashem should help us. This is a large part, I think, why people still try to daven in a minyan.

      • If R’ Chaim’s psak applies ONLY to Eretz Yisroel, then WHY do we have to listen to his psak RE; Kupat Hair – Matonos L’evyonim and other such rulings? We have our own gedolim Shlit”a Ad Mea V’esrim Shanim who tell us how to do things, and to support our local tzedakas , nusach hat’fila questions, etc.

    27. This article is quoting one opinion from one institution that was published in one journal. I could not find anything from NIH saying more than 6 feet. The CDC website says 6 feet. It’s not helpful to circulate every opinion to try to convince people not to gather. The fact that the Gedolim are telling us not to have Minyanim is the reason not to have Minyanim right now.


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