This letter was addressed to Rabbi Avraham Eliyahu Axelrod, an active communal Rabbi in Baltimore.

B”H, 29 Tishrei, 5709

Greetings and blessings,

I was informed of the tragedy that occurred with the passing of your mother. May the Omnipresent comfort you among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.

As per your request, in addition to what I sent you on Chol HaMoed Sukkos (which I sent with the intent that it be returned), I will also elucidate certain practices that stem from the directives of my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe Shlita.1

We do not tear the tallis katan. One should recite the Yizkor prayers in the first year [after the passing of his parent].2 He should not leave the synagogue, but he should recite [the prayer] in a manner that it is not obvious [that he is reciting it]. He should receive the aliyah of maftir for the entire eleven months [that he recites Kaddish]. He should endeavor to receive an aliyah to the Torah whenever possible. On Shabbos, this applies in both the morning and the afternoon. The prayer E‑l Malei Rachamim should not be recited during the first year.

One should endeavor to read publicly from the Torah and recite Mishnayos according to their order.3 The twenty-fourth chapter [of Taharos] and [the seventh chapter of] Mikvaos4[should be studied] after every prayer service during the thirty days of Shloshim mourning. Afterwards, it is sufficient to study the four mishnayos [at the conclusion of the cited chapter of Mikvaos whose letters serve as an acronym for the word] neshamah (“soul”).

The following Kaddeishim should be recited: before prayer [i.e., after the passage beginning Rabbi Yishmael], before Barchu, after the Shemoneh Esreh,5after U’va LeTziyon Goel and the Song of the Day, after kavei, after Aleinu, after Tehillim, and after the Mishnayos;before and after the Shemoneh Esreh of the Minchah service, after Aleinu, and after Mishnayos;before Barchu in the evening service,before and after the Shemoneh Esreh, after Aleinu, and after Mishnayos.

May [we merit] speedily in our days the fulfillment of the prophecy:6 “Those who lie in the dust will arise and sing,” after the coming of Mashiach and the true and complete Redemption.

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson