Rav Shmuel Wosner: Can A Baal Kriah Read The Torah With A Transparent Overlay?


wosnerRav Wosner was asked (Shevet HaLevi 8:29) about an ingenious idea for a Shul without a Baal Korei. You make a transparent overlay with Nikudos and taamim and place it on the words of the Sefer Torah. This way you are reading the actual Sefer Torah and any amateur can become a professional Baal Korei without mistakes.

He answers that technically this is permitted since reading through plastic or glass is considered reading the actual scroll. However, he says that he does not feel comfortable giving his stamp to this new innovation. He suggests solving the problem in the traditional way, which is for someone with a Chumash to whisper into the ear of the Baal Korei and the Baal Korei read from the Sefer Torah. He also comments that this is different than reading through eye glasses which is perfectly acceptable.

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  1. To be an excellent baal korei one needs to practise. The best way is to try and learn each sidra up to shaini and lain on shabbos minch and Monday and Thursday. After that one can progress and learn more. But to practise is the chief thing.