United Synagogue congregations are to host a record number of women’s Megillah recitals at Purim.
Finchley Synagogue, home of Chief Rabbi-elect Ephraim Mirvis, and Hampstead Garden Suburb are among communities where a woman will read the Book of Esther at a service for women on synagogue premises for the first time.
Hitherto, some communities have held such events only in private homes. But eight US synagogues will be featuring them this year — twice as many as in 2012.
HGS’s Rabbi Dov Kaplan confessed to a meeting held by United Synagogue Women that he did not like them himself. But he added: “Just because I am not comfortable with it, if it is halachically acceptable and women want to do it, then they should be given the space and opportunity to do so.”