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Torah Musings

Halachik Q&A: Aliyah Priorities


Certain lifecycle milestones are marked by being called to the Torah for an aliyah. The levels of obligation are as follows:

Level 1.

A Bar Mitzvah boy on his bar mitzvah day or the first Shabbos thereafter.

A chosson on the Shabbos before his wedding, this aliyah is called "Aufruf". (If the chosson needs to leave home before the Shabbos of his "Aufruf" due to the length of the journey to the wedding, he should receive an aliyah in his home town on the Shabbos before he departs, as well as on the Shabbos before his wedding, wherever he may be.)

Level 2.

A chosson on the Shabbos after his wedding, when the wedding took place on (Tuesday night,) Wednesday, Thursday or Friday.

Level 3.

A son on the day of a parent's yahrzeit.

Level 4.

The father of a newborn son on the Shabbos before the bris.

Level 5.

The father of a newbo daughter on the day she is named.

A mohel and sandek on the day of the bris.

A son on the Shabbos before a parent's yahrzeit.

One should receive an aliyah on his actual birthday or on the Shabbos before it.

A chosson on the Shabbos after his wedding, when the wedding took place on Sunday, Monday or Tuesday (before nightfall).

Level 6.

One who traveled overseas.

A guest from out of town.

One who needs to recite hagomel.

A father on the birthday of a daughter or a pre-bar mitzvah son.

The father of the Chosson on the Shabbos before the wedding.

Additional laws:

There is no obligation to receive an aliyah on the parsha that was read at one's Bar Mitzvah. 

The main blessing associated with the aliyah is the tzedaka that you give in honor of the aliyah.

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