Orthodox Dati Leumi Jerusalem Shul Appoints A Female Alongside The Shul’s Rav

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1Rabbi Benny Lau of Jerusalem’s Rambam Shul will be working with his newly-appointed co-spiritual leader, Karmit Feintuch, who has the title ‘Rabbanit’.

The Rambam Shul is a dati leumi shul located in the Katamon neighborhood of the capital and the shul has voted unanimously to take Rabbanit Feintuch on to work side-by-side with Rabbi Dr. Lau.

Feintuch, who teaches in Midreshet Migdal Ohz in Gush Etzion for the past seven years is expected to begin serving in her new post next month.

The Jerusalem Post reported that in 2014, Jennie Rosenfeld because the first female communal leader in an Orthodox community, appointed to serve in Efrat.

While there is the controversial Maharat Yeshiva in the USA, this is not the norm in Israel but it appears to becoming increasingly palatable in the modern religious community in Israel as well. The Rabbinical Council of America a number of months ago passed a resolution reaffirming its opposition to hiring women as religious leaders. Clearly Agudas Yisrael is opposed as well.

The JPost asked Rabbi Lau if he is concerned with the response the shul’s decision will elicit. He is quoted explaining he is not genuinely interested in what people have to say. He adds “Over fifty percent of the community are women”, questioning why a woman should not be a part of the leadership role.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)


16 COMMENTS

  1. They’ll be going to the next step soon enough

    They’re incrementally bending,pushing and breaking the boundaries

    Will it stop here?!

    Trouble is brewing

  2. Why are you all so quick to scream “Gevalt!” No body appointed her as the Rabbi – she is merely assisting in the management of the congregation in order to better serve the needs of the women via shiurim, Taharas issues etc. – why do the men straight away claim that this is pushing boundaries? Your cynicism sounds like Islam and not Judaism…..shame on you all.

  3. shes not even officially a rabbi, educational coordinator

    who has problems nowadays with wome giving shiurim, thats about al shes supposed to do

    please change it in the article

  4. Whats the big deal?
    She’s filling the job of a Rebbetzin.
    Maybe Rabbi Lau’s wife is not up for the job. Just because her husband is Rabbi material, doesn’t mean she’s Rebbetzin material.
    I know plenty of shuls that complain that they;d like their Rabbi’s wife to be more involved with shiurim or a Nishai and the Rabbi’s wife feels that that’s not her role or something she signed up for.

  5. I may not know better than Mr Lau but the Gedolei HaDor who have very forcibly forbidden such appointments, certainly do. And do not let the name Lau fool you. If you ask around you will hear that he is one of the black sheep of the family.

    Yes, I have heard of Chuldah. Is is you or Ms. Feintuch who suggests she is a neviah on the level of Chuldah?

  6. To all those insecure posters who invoke non-existant psaks from nameless “gadolim” (and I should know), perhaps take a cold shower and think about why you are threatened by a clearly educated yiddeshe woman who will be providing the IDENTICAL role already provided in most frum shuls by a rebbitzen, chinuch supervisor or by other NON-“Rabbinical” titles. She probably has more daas torah and knowledge of simple halaachic matters than 90 percent of the bal haabatim who comment here (myself included). Perhaps step back and wish her a yasher koach and explore whether your own shul might benefit from such a position. If not, step back and consider your own insecurity and attitude towards yiddeshe women.