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    Concerts in shule – Ask the Rabbi

    Q. Do you envision any issue with a synagogue being used on weekdays for music concerts?

    A. Nothing must ever be allowed in the synagogue which would be a moral or religious embarrassment. Even though the name “synagogue” and its Hebrew equivalent, bet k’nesset, mean “place of assembly” or community centre, there are limits, and it would be wrong to vulgarise, trivialise or secularise the edifice, making it, to echo a phrase used by a former Sydney rabbi, a pagan temple. As far as playing music in the synagogue is concerned, there are precedents from a number of places. However, the programme must not include items which would be out of place in a Jewish context.

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