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Chapter 139:12

12. On the first night, before kindling [the menorah], one should recite three blessings:
a) "L'hadlik [ner (shel Chanukah),]" ("[He gave us the mitzvah] to light the Chanukah candles").
b) "She'osoh nissim la'avoseinu..." ("He performed miracles for our forefathers").
c) "Shehecheyonu." On the subsequent nights, one does not recite "Shehecheyonu."

After reciting the blessings, one should light the first candle. Then, one should recite the passage "Haneiros hallolu" while one is lighting the other candles (1).

A convert should [slightly alter the second blessing, saying "...she'osoh nissim le'Yisroel" ("who performed miracles for Israel") [rather than "...who performed miracles for our forefathers"]. If he said the [regular form], "she'osoh nissim la'avoseinu," he fulfills his obligation (2).

[The following rules pertain to] an "onen" (one who has lost close relative who has not yet been buried, see Chapter 196). If there is another person present, the other person should kindle the Chanukah lights with the blessings, and [the "onen"] should respond "Amen." If there is no one else present, he should kindle the Chanukah lights himself without reciting the blessings.


(1) In his Piskei Siddur, Rav Shneur Zalman of Liadi mentions that the custom is to recite this passage after kindling all the lights. The Mishnah Berurah 676:8 cites both opinions.

(2) From the statements of the Mishnah Berurah 675:14, it appears that, at the outset, a convert should say "she'osoh nissim la'avoseinu."


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