Orthodox women's lead role

By Simon Rocker, November 25, 2013

Borehamwood held its first partnership minyan — an Orthodox service where some of the prayers can be led by women — last Friday evening.

The event, at the local Allum Hall community centre, attracted some 60 people, divided equally between the sexes, who sat separately on either side of a mechitzah. Men led minchah and ma’ariv. A woman took the Kabbalat Shabbat service.

In a joint statement, Gaby Scher and Miriam Lorie, co-chairs of the Borehamwood Partnership Minyan, said the first service “was spirited and spiritual, offering a beautiful davening experience for both men and women. We hope the energy and spirituality we experienced on Friday night will be maintained in-between our monthly services and will enhance our community as a whole.”

BPM is the first regular partnership minyan launched in the UK, following some 20-plus other such minyans in Israel and the US.

The service follows the halachic guidance of the distinguished British-born Israeli Talmud professor, Rabbi Daniel Sperber, and comes on the back of a series of education events examining the rabbinic sources behind partnership minyans.

The next service will be on the Shabbat morning of December 14.

Last updated: 10:45am, November 25 2013