Halacha Date: 15 Iyar 5779 May 20 2019
In the previous Halacha, we have explained that one should preferably not pray Shacharit before sunrise. Nevertheless, workers who must arrive at their jobs early in the morning and do not have an opportunity to pray after sunrise may act leniently and pray beginning from dawn which is calculated as seventy-two seasonal minutes before sunrise. Since many people have asked inquired about this, we shall now delineate exactly how to behave when pressed for time.
Clearly, one cannot stand and recite the Amida prayer immediately after dawn, for one must don Tefillin and recite the Pesukei De’Zimra and Keri’at Shema before reciting the Amida prayer. The Mitzvot of Keri’at Shema and Tefillin can begin being fulfilled only from dawn. Thus, practically speaking, from the time one begins praying Shacharit, one will only arrive at the Amida prayer approximately half an hour after dawn. This becomes very difficult for some individuals, especially in the winter when dawn is relatively later. For this reason, Maran zt”l explains the proper order for such people who must pray at a very early hour, as follows:
These individuals should arrive at the synagogue approximately ninety minutes before sunrise at which point they should begin reciting the customary order of the Korbanot. “Baruch She’amar” should be recited immediately after dawn (since it may not be recited before dawn). After concluding the “Yishtabach” blessing (when at least six minutes have passed since dawn), the Tallit and Tefillin should be donned while reciting their respective blessings upon them. The Chazzan should then recite the Half-Kaddish and “Barechu Et Hashem Ha’Mevorach.” The entire congregation should then begin the Blessings of Keri’at Shema (“Yotzer Or”) and continue as usual until the Amida.
When reaching the Amida prayer, the Chazzan should immediately begin reciting the Amida aloud. He should only recite the first three blessings, including the Kedusha, out loud with the rest of the congregation reciting these blessings along with the Chazzan in an undertone. After concluding “Baruch Ata Hashem Ha’El Ha’Kadosh” both the Chazzan and the rest of the congregation should proceed to complete the entire Amida silently. After concluding the Amida, the Chazzan should not repeat the Amida, for the members of the Minyan are rushing to work. If they have some extra time, they should recite the Vidduy, Thirteen Attributes of Mercy, and the supplication prayer. If time is short, the Half-Kaddish should be recited immediately followed by “Ashrei,” “Uva Le’Zion,” and Kaddish Titkabal. The Tallit and Tefillin should then be removed while reciting the Song of the Day and “Alenu Le’Shabe’ach.” Afterwards, they should disperse to their respective jobs.
On Mondays and Thursdays when time is short, it is preferable to read the Torah rather than to recite the additional supplication prayers added on these days.
Needless to say, if they have some additional time, the Minyan should pray like the rest of the Jewish nation with the Chazzan’s repetition of the Amida and trying to complete the other parts of the Shacharit prayer.