Pores mapah u-mekadesh: Continuing the Purim Seudah into Shabbat Rabbanit Chanital Ofan
Adar bet 5782 | March 2022
This year Purim falls on a Friday in Jerusalem. Most years we begin our Purim seudah late in the afternoon and continue the celebration into the night. In previous years, when Purim was on Friday, we made the seudah in the morning so we have time to prepare for Shabbat; but there was always a feeling that the Purim seudah was rushed and the joy and energy of the seudah lacking. How can we imbue the Friday Purim seudah with the full attention it deserves?
Under certain conditions, the Purim seudah can be held Friday afternoon, in correlation with a provision mentioned in another context referred to as pores mapa u-mekadesh (literally: ‘one covers with a tablecloth and makes Kiddush). If one begins a meal on Friday afternoon – the festivities may be continued into Shabbat, and the prolonged seudah will transition into the Shabbat meal. To facilitate the transition, one is required to remove the food from the table, cover the challahs, and make Kiddush, after which the meal can be continued.
This halakha is also relevant to the seudah of Purim; one may begin the seudah Friday afternoon, and continue the meal into Shabbat, transitioning into the Shabbat meal with Kiddush.
The following is a summary of the laws relating to pores mapa u-mekadesh:
- Preferably the seudah should begin after mincha gedolah (12:20 pm), and before the ninth halakhic hour (2:43 pm), but bedieved one may begin after this time.
- The meal should not be finished before sundown, and a significant portion should be reserved to be eaten on Shabbat.
- Shabbat candles should be lit at the appropriate time, and care taken to cease from any action that is prohibited on Shabbat from this point forward.
- Kabbalat Shabbat can be recited, including all the Tehillim chapters as arranged in the siddur, along with Lekha Dodi.
- Due to varying positions on the matter, one should avoid davening ma’ariv until after the seudah is over.
- The table should be cleared for Kiddush (which is recited without the blessing for wine, assuming the blessing on wine was already recited), and the challahs should be covered. Assuming one already washed and made hamotzi for the Purim seudah, these are not repeated when eating challah.
- After Kiddush, one should eat a portion of challah that is the equivalent of ke-zayit. Two challahs should be on the table, for lechem mishneh and distributed to all participants, just like every Shabbat. It is important to leave some space for enjoying the Shabbat food.
- Birkat ha-mazon is recited complete with Al ha-nissim for Purim, and Retzei for Shabbat.
- After the seudah, the participants should daven ma’ariv.
**If you’d like to see the full comprehensive teshuvah in Hebrew please click here