Halacha for Sunday 3 Sivan 5784 June 9 2024

The Definition of “Israeli” vs. “Non-Israeli” Regarding the Second Day of Yom Tov

We have discussed that non-Israeli residents must observe two days of the holiday of Shavuot.

An Israeli Who Travels Abroad
If an Israeli resident travels outside of Israel with the intention of staying abroad for a month or two, he retains the law of an Israeli resident who happens to be outside of Israel for the holidays; his laws have already been discussed in the previous Halacha.

Regarding those who are sent abroad by certain organizations, such as those sent by the Jewish Agency and the like, who reside outside of Israel with their families for a temporary period of time, but have in mind to return to Israel when their temporary stay is finished, since it is understood from beforehand that their stay abroad usually spans a year or two, as long as they are outside of Israel, they must conduct themselves exactly like the other non-Israeli residents around them regarding the second day of Yom Tov, whether in public or in private. They must therefore recite Yom Tov prayers on the second day of Yom Tov with the other non-Israeli residents. Similarly, they may not don Tefillin on the second day of Yom Tov even though it is a regular weekday for Israeli residents. Additionally, they would have to conduct a second Seder on the second night of Pesach, and regarding all laws, they are no different than any non-Israeli residents.

A Non-Israeli Who Makes “Aliyah
If a non-Israeli resident makes Aliyah (moves to Israel), however, he is uncertain if he will find a way to earn a livelihood there and, if he is successful, he will settle in Israel, and if not, he will move back to his former place outside of Israel, he must still observe two days of Yom Tov like other non-Israeli residents, for he has not yet completely mentally uprooted himself from his place outside of Israel. He is therefore considered like a non-Israeli staying abroad in Israel.

Single Men and Women
If a single man who is independent, meaning that he is not necessarily contingent on his parents’ wishes, moves to Israel, he observes only one day of Yom Tov similar to Israeli residents, in hopes that he will find a wife in Israel and settle there. However, if he says that he is contingent on his parents’ wishes and they have requested that he return home to outside of Israel, he must then observe two days of Yom Tov.

Nevertheless, if he knows in his heart that if an appropriate marriage prospect to arise and he would settle in Israel if financially possible, and if these scenarios would occur, he would refuse his parents’ request to return home to outside of Israel (which is indeed halachically permissible in this kind of situation), he should conduct himself like an Israeli and he need not observe a second day of Yom Tov.

A Non-Israeli Who Owns an Apartment in Israel
If a non-Israeli resident owns a home or apartment in Israel and spends each of the three festivals (Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot) in his home in Israel, he need not observe a second day of Yom Tov. Although he spends most of the year in his home outside of Israel, nevertheless, since he spends each of the festivals in Israel, he is considered an Israeli with regards to the holidays.

Nevertheless, the above only applies when the individual spends all three festivals in one’s apartment in Israel. However, if one is only there for two of the three festivals, Maran zt”l ruled that one may not act leniently, and one must observe two days of Yom Tov.

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