If one is davening shemona esrei and a young baby (under 8 months old) starts to cry severely. What is the Halacha? Should she continue to finish shemona esrei ? Can she pick up the baby? What if the baby is not close enough for her to reach?
If the child is crying and you are in middle of davening, you can sign to him to try to get him to stop without talking out, but if that doesn’t work and his crying is disturbing you, you can go somewhere that the child will not disturb you. (If that is possible, that hearing him cry, or the thought of his crying won’t disturb you.) If need be, you can also walk over to the child and quiet him without talking out. During Shemona Esrei it is not allowed to pick up the baby(see O:CH 96-1, M:B-4). As a side point if you suspect that the baby is going to cry, you should not start davening, because as a mother of a young child you are considered busy with your baby.
Kesiva vchasima tova
Sharei Teshuva 104-1, Tefila Khilchos 12 footnote 200 in the name of R’S. Z. Auerbach zt”l.