A Gabbai ( _he. גבאי) (or sometimes: Shamash שמש} is a person who assists in the running of a synagogue and ensures that the needs are met, for example the Jewish prayer services run smoothly, or an assistant to a rabbi (particularly the secretary or personal assistant to a Hassidic Rebbe). A gabbai's obligations might also include maintaining a Jewish cemetery.

In many synagogues the gabbai is not a permanent job like the one described above but rather a role in the Torah service. The gabbai stands next to the Torah reader, holding a version of the text with vowels and trop markings (which are not present in the actual Torah scroll), and follows along in order to correct the reader if he makes an error (e.g., mispronounces a word, or skips a word).

The gabbai is also responsible for calling congregants up to the Torah.

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  • Gabbaï — Le Gabbaï est un homme s occupant de la synagogue et plus de ce qu il s y passe, et c est en fait ce qui le différencie du chamach. Effectivement, le chamach s occupe plus des affaires techniques de la synagogue tel que les évènements se… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Gabbai — Seph. /gah buy /; Ashk. /gah buy/; Eng. /geuh buy /, n., pl. Gabbaim Seph. /gah bah eem /; Ashk. /gah buy im/, Eng. Gabbais. (sometimes l.c.) Hebrew. 1. a minor official of a synagogue, having limited ceremonial or administrative functions. 2.… …   Universalium

  • gabbai — noun An assistant in a synagogue …   Wiktionary

  • gabbai — gab·bai …   English syllables

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