Question:

In a Christian college that I must go to for courses, there is a cross (some have Jesus on it too) above every blackboard. Are we allowed to daven in the rooms? Say berachos? I would assume that we cannot take it down and put it back up, since that is being ma’amid an avoda zara (besides that the college would not allow that)— is that true?

Answer:

L’chatchila you should not daven in that room at all, however if you can’t daven, and concentrate in any other place, then you may daven there however you should be facing a different direction. This is even if you will not be facing in the correct way, it is still better than facing an avodah zara. If that is also not possible. You may daven facing it, however you should not bow during shemona esrei.

Regarding removing the avoda zara, the poskim do not say that this is what should be done, and I am not familiar with this term of being mamid an avoda zara. Regarding saying brachos, I have not seen anyone talk about it.

Sources:

Trumas Hadeshen 6, O:CH 94-9, M:B 30, Shearim MItzuyanim B’halacha 18-6, Nishmas Avrohom 94-7.

Tags: idol prayer teffilah

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