# 2833 Stand on Safe Ground

Q. In our shul the amud at the front is close to an entrance and people often go by. Due to the current covid need to separate and avoid contamination, the Chazan who is very worried has asked that on this special occasion he should be allowed to daven from the bimah, that is far better separated. Is that permitted?
A. Although, by most Sephardi and Yemenite congregations there is only a bimah in the shul and the tradition is for the Baal Tefilah to daven from there, the accustomed minhag by Ashkenazim is to daven from the amud in front or next to the Aron Hakodesh.
Shulchan Aruch (O. H. 90: 1) rules that one should not stand on an elevated location when he davens. Mishna Berura (ibid. 3) explains that one may not daven from a high location since there is no haughtiness before Hashem, as the posuk states, ‘from the depths I call out to you Hashem.’
Poskim have addressed at length this shaila. K’sav Sofer (O.H. 19), Minchas Yitzchok (3: 8) and others maintain that the shliach tzibur should not daven from the bimah, but rather comply with the dictum to go down before the teiva (amud).
However, Igrois Moshe (O.H. 2: 28 and 3: 10) and others permit in need to daven from the bimah, such as when it is difficult to hear the shliach tzibur standing by the amud.
Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is that in this particular case of covid need it is also permitted, especially since this bimah is at the same level of the amud.
Rabbi A. Bartfeld as advised by Horav Shlomo Miller and Horav Aharon Miller Shlit’a

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