Re: Women touching/kissing the Torah

Lipman Podolsky (lap@hakotel.org.il)
Mon, 17 Mar 1997 13:22:28 +0200 (GMT+0200)

Jeremy Glass wrote:
>Recently I joined an Orthodox minyan affiliated with an Orthodox shul where
>the practice was, before and after K'riat HaTorah, to pass the Sefer Torah
>around both the Men's and Women's side of the Mechitzeh after taking out
>and before returning the Sefer Torah to the Aron HaKodesh.
>Since then a new Rav has joined our minyan and this practice has been
>stopped based on the fact that it is halachicly prohibitted.
>Could you please provide some perspective on whether there are any clear
>halachic prohibitions of this practice, if it is executed in a most
>orthodox and modest fashion. Further, what are the reasons for it to be
>halachically permitted.

Since the new Rabbi in Sydney is the halachic posek who determined what
the proper behavior should be in his particular shul, I feel that any
questions regarding his p'sak should be directed to him. Nowadays with
so many Jews second-guessing the decisions of their Rabbis, it is
becoming increasingly difficult to run a shul or congregation. Not that
it was that much easier before. Asei Lecha Rav, VeHistalek min haSafek
(Aquire a Rabbi for yourself and avoid situations of doubt [Ethics of our
Fathers 1:16] ).

Take care,

Lipman Podolsky