Ask the Rabbi

  • Halacha
  • Minyan - Quorum
קטגוריה משנית
Can a minyan be constituted on zoom?
Shalom U'vracha, The leading poskim discussed this in the beginning of the pandemic of covid-19. The answer is that you cannot make a minyan using Zoom because people must be together physically in order to constitute a minyan. The Shulchan Aruch (55:14) does indicate that if there are nine people physically together, however, there is one person outside the building and his face can be seen-- then he can be counted as the tenth man of the minyan. However the Aruch Hashulchan (55:20) wrote that this halacha is only talking about one man, who is the tenth person. It would be unacceptable to have two people from a ten-person minyan (numbers 9 and 10) outside the room. Additionally, the Aruch Hashulchan added that even the tenth man who is outside would be acceptable only if he is right outside the shul on the sidewalk or street. However, if he is in a different room like the ezrat nashim (women's section) he can't join the minyan. Additionally, not all poskim agree with the Shulchan Aruch who permitted one man to join a minyan from outside the building (see Mishna Berura 55:52). This is the opinion of all the gedolei haposkim. Note: My understanding of your question is if a Zoom participant can be counted towards the ten men in a minyan. I answered the question accordingly. However, there are other questions about Zoom that have been discussed in the past; namely can one join an existing minyan through Zoom, can one hear the Megillah through Zoom and many other issues.
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