Yahrzeit Candles and Torah Study

Sefardi Beit Sefer

Question: Is there any source for lighting a candle on the day of a parent’s Yahrzeit (anniversary of death)? Can this custom be fulfilled by turning on an electric light or candle?

Answer: A source for lighting a candle in honor of the deceased is mentioned in the Gemara (Berachot 52b) where the Mishnah states that the “Boreh Me’orei Ha’esh” blessing recited on Motza’ei Shabbat may not be recited on a candle of a deceased person. Rashi (ibid. 53a) explains: “Any deceased person who is a respectable person and a candle is usually lit during the day in his honor, even if this candle was lit on Motza’ei Shabbat, the blessing may not be recited upon it, for such a candle is meant for honor and not in order to illuminate.” Maran Ha’Shulchan Aruch (OC, Chapter 298, Section 12) rules likewise.

The Orchot Chaim writes: “Rabbeinu Asher writes…

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