Steps Toward Inclusiveness in Sisterhood
- Ask your rabbi if he/she supports including non-Jewish women, who are part of your community, as members of sisterhood. The rabbi of the synagogue is the mara d’atra (religious authority) for each sisterhood and must be consulted before instituting option #2 below.
- Check your synagogue bylaws to see if there are restrictions. If there are none, you can proceed. If there are, then those bylaws have to be changed before you can proceed.
- Check your sisterhood bylaws. Refer to the model bylaws below for the correct wording in the membership section of your bylaws. Your sisterhood bylaws may need to be changed. Option #2 includes the non-Jewish woman.
Article III: Membership
(Select one (1) of the following options)
Option #1: Any Jewish woman agreeing to the above mission is eligible to become a member upon payment of dues.
Option #2: Any woman agreeing to the above mission is eligible to become a member upon the payment of dues.
Other sections of your bylaws include qualifications for officers and board of directors. Decide which positions the non-Jewish woman can hold. She cannot be sisterhood president or hold positions dealing with ritual decisions.