Friday, May 12, 2006

Eruvin in the News: Wynnewood, PA

From Point A to Point B

Extension of existing 'eruv' will allow simple tasks to get done


Bryan Schwartzman

For more than 30 years now, Norm Garfield has not been able to retrieve his Saturday morning paper from the front lawn of his Wynnewood home. In fact, during Shabbat, he’s never been able to take advantage of a warm spring afternoon by lounging with a book in his own backyard.

“You couldn’t have lunch outside either,” said the 63-year-old Garfield, who is Orthodox, adding that when any of his six grandchildren come to visit, he’s never even been able to push them in a stroller to synagogue or the park.

That’s because Garfield’s home does not fall inside an eruv, a symbolic barrier surrounding an area within which Jewish law permits the observant to carry such things as keys, books, blankets, food ─ even children ─ outside of homes and synagogues come Shabbat. Even when his family’s synagogue, Congregation Beth Hamedrosh, created its own eruv in the mid-1990s that encompassed parts of Overbrook and Wynnewood, Garfield’s property was not included inside the boundaries. Read on ...

(I would like to point out two issues regarding this article that one should ask his rav about. 1) The issue of reading a newspaper on Shabbos, which some poskim consider it to be shtarei hedyotos. 2) The issue of having a newspaper delivered on Shabbos. Newspapers are usually delivered from outside the techum and it maybe also considered [maris ayin] amira l’akum.)