Common Mistakes Made During Kiddush

In this 8:33 long video, Rabbi Joel Finkelstein of the Modern Orthodox Anshei Sphard Beth El Emeth Congregation in Memphis, Tennessee, goes through the most common mistakes made while listening to or making Kiddush on Shabbat. Although Rabbi Finkelstein uses many Hebrew terms throughout the video that may not be familiar to all audiences, he generally translates or explains them adequately or provides enough context that most viewers will still understand his message. The video ends with the rabbi’s recitation of the Friday night Kiddush and an explanation of how to conduct Kiddush on Saturday during the day.


Rabbi Finkelstein begins by describing the basic purpose of the Kiddush ceremony, and then explains each of the following “Kiddush Bloopers”:

1. Kiddush must be made over a full cup of wine.

2. Those listening are obligated to hear every word.

3. The person making Kiddush must hold the cup in his/her hand while reciting Kiddush.

4. Everyone must be gathered together around the table during Kiddush, establishing themselves as one, focused group.

5. Both the person making Kiddush and those listening must have a degree of “intention” in order to fulfill the mitzvah.

6. The person making Kiddush must wait until the end of the blessings before pouring the wine into other cups.

7. Those listening must wait until the person making Kiddush drinks his/her own wine before talking or drinking.