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Grandson Saying Kaddish

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May 12, 2019 | by Rabbi Pinchas Waldman

My grandmother recently passed away. She only had one son, my father a”h, who passed away a few years ago. She also had two daughters. I am the oldest grandson. Should I say kaddish for my grandmother or should one of the sons-in-law do so?

The Aish Rabbi Replies

I’m very sorry for your family’s loss. You and yours should only know happy occasions.

In terms of kaddish, you are the better choice. Since you are an actual descendant, every good deed you do is a merit for her soul. The reason is because unlike your uncles, you would not exist if not for your grandmother. Thus, every mitzvah you do is credited to your grandmother – who at least indirectly brought you into the world.

You should ask your mother first if she minds, and if not, you should say kaddish for your grandmother.

Note that the ruling would be the same – that a grandson takes precedence over a son-in-law – even when both his parents are still alive.

(Sources: Shulchan Aruch O.C. 132:2, Biur Halachah – Ma’amar Kaddishin there.)



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