Re: Kaddish - who chants / who stands?

Rabbi Goldberger (rabbi@montefiore.torah.org)
Sat Nov 4 18:44:48 1995 -0500 (EST)

The Jerusalem Talmud states: Any "davar she-bi-kedusha" requires
that one must stand up on his feet. A "davar she-bi-kedusha" is any
part of the prayer service that cannot be said without a minyan. This
primarily includes kaddish, kedusha, and borchu. Thus, all three,
according to this Yerushalmi, ought to be said standing.

However, there is some question as to the authenticity of this
Yerushalmi. The great kabbalist, Rav Yitzchak Luria, in his Shulchan
Aruch HaArizal, writes that the requirement of standing for every
davar she-bi-kedusha was not said by the Yerushalmi at all but rather
was a private practice of one particular sage and was printed in the
Talmud in error.

The custom, therefore, is for everyone to stand for kedusha and
borchu, but to require only the mourner to stand for kaddish unless
the congregation was already standing anyway for the previous segment
of the prayers. Common practice in many shuls, however, is for the
entire congregation to rise for any kaddish, and this should be
respected wherever it is the practice.

A non-mourner does not recite the kaddish, unless he is the
chazan.