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Several years ago, while making a trip to the Catskill area, I stopped near the large shul in Woodbridge, NY (I forgot its name). The rabbi has a reserved parking spot across the street from the shul.

The sign in front of the spot says:

"Reserved for the rabbi. Violators will have to deliver the sermon on Shabbat."

I must admit, it is a memorable humorous sign. I love it. But, I'm curious. Could the rabbi halachically impose his own made up "penalty"?

Offhand, I think he was being funny, but, let's say he really wanted to teach the violator a lesson that he shouldn't park there again. Is the rav allowed to impose any penalty he wishes for the purposes of "teaching a lesson"?

  • Of course he was being funny. If you want the Rabbi's privileges, you get his work too. – Yishai Jun 24 '15 at 19:32
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    Seems like if you park in that spot, you are voluntarily entering into a contract which requires you to give the Shabbos sermon. – Daniel Jun 24 '15 at 19:35
  • Why the downvote? I think this is a perfectly valid question. – Y     e     z Jun 24 '15 at 19:52
  • @Daniel I assume that you were being humorous. U can't enter a contract for violating someone's property. – DanF Jun 24 '15 at 19:56
  • @yEz People occasionally downvote when either they don't have a sense of humor themselves, or don't think that I'm (not) trying to be "funny". Both funny-haha & funny-strange :-% – DanF Jun 24 '15 at 19:58

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