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Skipping part of Teffilos for women


Rabbi David Sperling

Elul 20, 5778
Hi, I just wanted to check does this answer also apply to unmarried women, or should we just start from the beginning? Also, what about married women?
Shalom, Thank you for your question. The question of women skipping parts of the morning service (especially P'sukay D'zimrah) in order to say the Amidah with the congregation is an interesting one. Rav S. Z. Aurbach zt”l is quoted (in Hilchot Shlomo, Tefillah, chapter 5, note 4) “A woman does not skip over parts of the service in order to be able to pray together with the congregation, as a woman does not have a law of congregational prayer [tefillah b'tzibur] at all”. The source for this is noted as from the work Avnay Yeshapheh 16, 6. So a woman who wants to say all her regular davening and not skip over parts in order to say the Amidah with the minyan, certainly has on whom to rely. Despite this ruling however, I humbly beg to differ. It would seem to me that a woman should follow the same ruling as given to a man in this case. This is for several reasons. Firstly, it is not at all clear that a woman does not have a law of “tefillah be'zibur” when she joins a minyan of men. She certainly is obligated to answer kaddish, kedusha and listen to the Torah reading. She gets merit for coming joining the congregation. And, according to some opinions can even say kaddish with the minyan. So why should she be considered as not part of the tefillah be'zibur in order to skip parts of the service in order to get the benefits of praying the Amidah with a minyan like a man does? Secondly, there are opinions that do not obligate women in P'Sukay D'zimrah at all – in which case she can certainly skip over parts of them in order to pray the Amidah with a minyan. One can certainly rely on these opinions together with the need to pray the Amidah with the minyan. I see no difference between married and unmarried women in these laws. May all our prayers be acceptable before the Holy One. Blessings.
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