“A lot of Orthodox Jews are not willing to come to a place like this, simply because there is no rabbi.”Alperowitz will not lead the Reform congregation at Mt.
Zion, but Oppenheimer said he will be a valuable addition to the community. Zion services will continue to be led by lay people and by students who visit from an Ohio-based school, Oppenheimer said.“It’s going to be nice having Mendel here, and he will be a resource,” Oppenheimer said.
Instead, Jews in the city and the rest of the state have relied on traveling students for studying the Torah and for practices and traditions that often require a rabbi.
Having Alperowitz in Sioux Falls will be a resource for the community, Maccadi said.
Before Alperowitz announced his plans, Maccadi was planning to drive to Omaha or Chicago to have a rabbi help with his son’s bar mitzvah.“Once we establish that, an Orthodox synagogue, the community will grow leaps and bounds,” Maccadi said.
He guessed he is one of roughly 20 people in Sioux Falls who are Orthodox.
The Sioux Falls business owner said he helped pioneer an effort to get kosher meats at the Hy-Vee on 49th Street and Louise Avenue.