We are continuing in siman 6, regarding the bracha of hagomeil.
The Chayei Adam writes that lechatchilla, one should recite hagomeil within three days of the incident requiring the bracha. If they did not recite it within three days, they can recite it later, as we learned regarding 30 days (shiur 1257). Although our minhag is to recite the bracha at the time of krias hatorah, It is better to recite the bracha within three days without a sefer torah than to wait until a krias hatorah. Nevertheless, there is no time limit to reciting this bracha, and, bedieved, even after 30 days a person would still recite it.
Women also have a chiyuv to recite hagomeil. Preferably, the bracha should be recited in front of 10 men, as the pasuk from which we learn about hagomeil (Tehillim kapitel 107) refers to a khal, which refers to men. The Mishnah Berurah (219:sk 3) writes that when it is not possible, one can recite the bracha in front of 10 women and men, as long as there is at least one man within the group. The requirement for 10 is not a requirement for a halachic minyan, but to praise Hashem in a large group, and 10 is considered a large group due to their status as a khal. Thus, a woman could recite hagomeil in front of 9 women and one man, such as her husband or father.
A koton does not recite hagomeil. We state in the bracha that hagomeil lechayavim tovos, even though a person deserves to be punished (chayavim), Hashem still grants good (tovos). Since a koton is not yet of an age that they can be liable to punishment, the bracha is completely inappropriate to them. The Mishnah Berurah adds that there is not even a reason for them to recite it for chinuch purposes.
This does not mean that a child can never recite brachos which mention hagomeil, such as hagomeil hasadim tovim le’amo yisroel at the end of birchos hashachar. In such a bracha, a koton can have in mind the good Hashem does for them, irregardless of deservance.
Rav Isaac Ausband ztl questioned why we seem to recite the equivalent of a birchas hagomeil every morning at the end of birchos hashachar. He would answer that in Europe, for a person to make it from home to shul without being beaten up by the goyim was in and of itself a reason to recite hagomeil.
- Lechatchilla, one should recite hagomeil within three days with 10 people, even if they will not be able to recite it with a sefer torah.
- If they are unable to recite hagomeil within three days, they should try to recite it within 30 days.
- If one will not be able to gather 10 people within 30 days, they should recite it with a bracha in front of less than 10, and, when they are able to gather 10, they should repeat the bracha without Hashem’s name.
- Bedieved, there is no time limit to this bracha.
- Lechatchilla, the bracha should be recited in front of 10 men, with at least two talmidei chachamim. However, women may recite the bracha in front of women, as long as there is at least one man present.
- Women are also chayav in this bracha, but a koton is not, and does not recite the bracha even for chinuch purposes.