Project Genesis

Prayer and Religious Articles

The Synagogue

Synagogue Membership Dues

There are members of our congregation on fixed incomes who simply have no money. I suggested that they be able to pay their membership in installments, or have them reduced, possibly waved in light of their circumstances. I must present my argument at the next board meeting. Is there anything from Torah to support my position?

As a matter of fact there is a source in the Talmud Berachos 28a. The Talmud relates that Rabbi Gamliel used to charge a token amount to enter the study hall in order to ensure that people coming to study were doing it for the right reasons. The Talmud states clearly that this wasn’t the right thing to do. We shouldn’t drive away those that can’t afford the shul. Certainly we can charge membership in order to pay the expenses, but we must work with the congregants in a sensitive manner. Many congregations allow membership to be paid in installments, and this is the proper way.

Rabbi Meir Goldberg

No Follow-ups »

No published follow-up questions.

We respond to every follow-up question submitted, but only publish selected ones. In order to be considered for publication, questions must be on-topic, polite, and address ideas rather than personalities.


Powered by WordPress