web analytics
September 2, 2014 / 7 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



CHAG SAMEACH!

Rabbi Riskin Permits Women to Read Ruth for Men in Orthodox Shul

It appears that Rabbi Riskin's congregation is not easily offended.
WomanReading

Tomorrow, on the holiday of Shavuot, in one of the synagogues of the town of Efrat in Judea and Samaria, two women will come up to read the Megillah of Ruth as both the men and women of the shul will be listening. This will not be taking place in a Reform or even Conservative synagogue, but in the Zemer Hazayit Orthodox synagogue of the town’s most prominent rabbi, who is one of its founders, Rabbi Shlomo Riskin.

“The initiative for the Megillah reading by women began with a constraint,” Dina Mann, one of the two Shavuot readers, told Maariv. Last Purim, the shul was looking for a man to read the Esther Megillah, and when none was found, the women of the community, many of whom have been reading the Esther Megillah for women for years, posed an halachic query to Rabbi Riskin, asking if they could read Esther in the absence of a qualified man.

The Efrat Rabbi answered that while men cannot keep the mitzvah of hearing the Esther Megillah by listening to a woman’s reading, it would be allowable with other megillahs (Ecclesiastics, Song of Songs, Ruth and Lamentations).

“One of the principles of our synagogue is the integration of women within the framework of halacha,” Mann said, “under the guidance and decisions of Rabbi Shlomo Riskin.”

“This point is deeply ingrained in the core idea of our synagogue,” she added.

The women will be reading the Megillah from the women’s section.

Mann said she expected the men of the synagogue to be very accepting of the new custom.

Rabbi Riskin told Maariv that he sees no problem in women’s reading behind a mechitzah. He said that the only reason he had not allowed women’s reading of the Esther Megillah had to do with the fact that some Ashkenazi rabbis are explicitly against it – while the Sephardim support it.

The Shulchan Aruch follows the Gemara Megillah in stating that it is permitted for women to go up to the Torah—which included reading allowed one’s assigned portion—but at the same time discourages actually letting them fulfill the mitzvah because it might offend the congregation.

It appears that Rabbi Riskin’s congregation is not easily offended.

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

30 Responses to “Rabbi Riskin Permits Women to Read Ruth for Men in Orthodox Shul”

  1. David Conley says:

    So the Shulchan Aruch allows women to read all the megillahs and their Torah portion; men, get over your hangups.

  2. It will surely "hit the fan" now.

  3. David Lerner says:

    The times they are achangin'

  4. Harry Bloch says:

    WOMEN POWER !!!! YEA !!!

  5. Harry, its orthodox Jewish power. be careful who you're praising.

  6. Bruce Cohen says:

    All the men will be at the Kotel throwing rocks at the women there..

  7. I was once privileged to hear Megillas Rus read by a woman at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale. It was the best laining by far that I've heard anytime, anywhere. The woman had a beautiful voice. But doesn't this raise the issue of kol isha?

  8. I was once privileged to hear Megillas Rus read by a woman at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale. It was the best laining by far that I've heard anytime, anywhere. The woman had a beautiful voice. But doesn't this raise the issue of kol isha?

  9. Rabbi Riskin, who I was lucky to have as a Rabbi once, is a great leader.

    Many Orthodox people don't like siting in the back of the bus, even if it is a custom.

  10. Why such a gratuitous editorial comment at the end? Get over it.

  11. Dina Mann says:

    The reading was GREAT!
    Rabbi Riskin joined us for Tfilla as well, and gave a whole Dvar Torah mid-Tfilla about the Hallachic and Hashkafic reasoning behind his very positive support of this step.

  12. איזה יופי! יישר כוח

  13. Rachel Karlin says:

    Kol hakavod Dina!!

  14. Dina Mann says:

    Here is how Rabbi Riskin addressed the issue of Kol Isha in his sermon in Shul today on the occasion of this Megilla reading:
    From the Gmara that states that all may read Megillat Esther, even women (with the understanding that they are talking about FOR men), Poskim such as the Pri Chadash (I think) learn that "Kol B'Isha Erva" is not an issue in "Dvarim SheBikdusha".

  15. Next – Shir Hashirim?

  16. Dina Mann says:

    Nope. Next Eicha, then Kohelet, then Shir HaShirim (not all me. other women from the community)
    Although some of the women seem reluctant to do Shir HaShirim due to its content. I can see it being weird to stand in Shul and discuss parts of my body in first person. So we'll see when we get there.

  17. What does this say about the men of Efrat?

  18. Daniel Ebel says:

    Before you know it, women will be driving on the roads and voting.

  19. Daniel Ebel says:

    Before you know it, women will be driving on the roads and voting.

  20. Daniel Ebel says:

    And why is the editorial comment in the section labeled "News"?

  21. Yossi Pollak says:

    Why should they be offended? They have an halachic authority who approved it. End of story.

  22. Rabbi Josh Yuter says:

    תהלים כה:יא
    וְסָלַחְתָּ לַעֲוֹנִי כִּי רַב הוּא

  23. Rabbi Josh Yuter says:

    תהלים כה:יא
    וְסָלַחְתָּ לַעֲוֹנִי כִּי רַב הוּא

  24. Van Wallach says:

    Viva kol isha!

  25. Noah Benjamin Bickart says:

    "Kol Isha" doesn't exist. See the Rif to the sugyot in question in Berachot and Kiddushin.

  26. Charlie Hall says:

    And the problem with this is?

  27. The problem with this is that some people have gotten it into their heads that anything that allows women a greater role in Jewish practice–even if it's patently halachically permitted, in some cases even if it was done that way historically–is part of a plot to make mitzvot less special by letting just anyone do them.

  28. That they chose a good rabbi? That their egos are healthy? That their wives are learned?

  29. Charlotte Griffin: About the men. Not the Rabbi, not their wives.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Hamas's leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh (in blue shirt, center), benefitted politically - and in a dramatic fashion - from this summer's war.  Photo from Hamas victory rally, Aug. 27, 2014.
Gazan Deaths and Destruction Dramatically Drives Popularity for Hamas
Latest News Stories
Hamas's leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh (in blue shirt, center), benefitted politically - and in a dramatic fashion - from this summer's war.  Photo from Hamas victory rally, Aug. 27, 2014.

Rockets and violence over diplomacy and passivity is the Palestinian Arab ruling style of choice, as reflected in a PCPSR poll.

Lady Gaga defies BDS  again with a show in Tel Aviv  on Sept. 13, 2014.

Maybe Abbas should accuse Lady Ga-Ga of incitement for saying “Shalom.”

British Jew Neil Masterson allegedly punched anti-Semitic MP George Galloway in the face.

The prosecutor says Masterson told police, “I didn’t want him to think I’m scared.”

Young Israeli boy dip apple in honey in tradition with the Rosh HaShanah New Year holiday

Honey cake, gourmet honey, flavored honey, and honey as a recipe in chicken, and even fish, are all expected to contribute to soaring sales of honey this Rosh Hashanah and holiday season. Ironically, the US Department of Agriculture is conducting hearings to define honey or just how much honey is required to qualify for “pure […]

Abbas does not have to push agenda because he has the Obama administration is his spokesman.

The Islamic State (ISIS) has just released a video showing the beheading of another American journalist, Steven Sotloff, according to a monitoring group.

Cantor can thank his defeat to a Tea Party candidate for leading him to more lucrative and stable career.

Hamas won the war in political terms, but that won’t stop Kerry.

A farmer in the (legal) Tikkun Olan Cannabis farm near Tzfat. This is one of their greenhouses. The company is licensed by Israel’s Ministry of Health to grow, process and distribute the medicinal plant.

Israeli intelligence sparked a massive manhunt that foiled an Arab terror attack, caught two suspects and kept Israeli civilians safe.

The ‘Talansky affair’ corruption trial of former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert re-opened today in Jerusalem.

Iran has successfully tested a new defensive radar and missile system, its air force chief announced Monday.

Diplomatic relations with Israel are likely to remain in deep freeze for the next few years, Turkish PM Davutoglu signals.

Events on the other side of Israel’s northern border are heating up. The IDF is on high alert in the Golan Heights.

Germany and other western countries have begun providing weapons to Kurds in fight against the IS.

More Articles from Yori Yanover
rain ATM

A Jerusalem woman is trying to hold on to her umbrella while withdrawing some cash at a Meah Shearim ATM, Sunday, March 9, 2014. The rain appeared out of the blue (which is how rain should), after a warm week that started to feel like summer. Well, it don’t feel like summer no more. Last […]

Rabbi Meir Mazuz (seen visiting a synagogue in Crown Heights, Brooklyn) declared in a public Internet psak that it is legal for a Jew to go up to temple Mount.

Needless to say, Shas, the Haredi Sefardi party, is not happy.

“The only difference between this world and the time of Meshiach is our bondage to the gentile kingdoms.”

Here’s the Israeli Navy boat INS Hanit arriving in Eilat on Saturday, March 8, 2014, after capturing the Klos C, which was carrying dozens of advanced Iranian-supplied weapons made in Syria and intended for Palestinian guerrillas in the Gaza Strip. Here’s Israeli Navy Commander Vice Admiral Ram Rotberg speaking with the INS Hanit soldiers in […]

Pat Condell has a new video out, so, sit back, have fun. By the way, Message to Offended Muslims should not be confused with Message to Off Handed Muslims. Also, I’d love to hear what he has to say about Haredim.

The description that came with this picture says: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks with American actor Bette Midler during an event at the house of Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan in Hollywood on March 6, 2014. But Bette Midler is not really an actor, she’s a singer who made movies for the LGBT community and […]

We will shut them up in the campuses, we will shut them up in the high schools, we will shut them up at the 92nd St. Y.

An Israeli female soldier (because they’re better at removing babies from their homes) evacuates a baby from a settlement in Judea and Samaria some time in the recent past. I’m thinking, if the baby was angry enough, couldn’t he evacuate in return, right there in her arms? Imagine the same picture, except with a settler […]

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/women-to-read-ruth-for-men-in-rabbi-riskins-shul/2013/05/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: