Our homepage article this week talks about the changing demographics in the rabbinate. It specifically sites a growing number of Orthodox women who, while not rabbis, are taking over duties traditionally reserved for congregation leaders.
Shmuel Rosner of Ha’aretz investigates this trend in “Who’s that woman in the pulpit?“:
She is part of a new fashion that is getting quite a lot of attention in modern Orthodox circles in America, an offshoot of one of the few trends that are occurring almost simultaneously in America and Israel – the Orthodox women’s revolution. Or to use plain English: women taking key, quasi-rabbinic roles in synagogues. They are almost rabbis, but not really. Or maybe really, but just not called by that name. They deliver sermons, but they cannot lead prayers, nor can they officiate at weddings. But maybe at other ceremonies: for example, funerals.