Dear Rabbi Simon,
Our succa only seats 3-4 people but we’ve enthusiastically invited a couple of people ‘too many’ for one of the meals.
On a practical level, what can we do without having to disinvite the ‘extras’, which would not be very nice?
If I’m not mistaken, the succa obligation is really only for the men. Would it be OK if the men ate in the succa and the ladies inside? Would the ladies have to stand into the succa to hear kiddush or can they stay inside while listening to my recitation of kiddush? The entrance to my succa is literally one step onto the patio, there would be no problem hearing me from the succa.
Thank you in advance for your guidance.
TY for your Q.
It is indeed awkward to disinvite guests, for reasons of courtesy and more. In this case, your suggestion is certainly acceptable halakhically, ie the obligation to dwell/eat in the sukkah is incumbent upon men, and is optional for women. If all can hear you when you recite kiddush, and you have them in mind (even though they may be outside your field of vision) you may divide up in the way which you describe.
From a family/hospitality standpoint, of course, this may not be ideal. In the future, you may want to explore other possibilities, such as (obviously) a larger sukkah, if possible, or even a sukkah which opens into the house, so that all may eat “together” even if some (ie those not obligated in the mitzvah of sukkah) are under the roof and therefore technically not in the sukkah itself.
I hope this makes sense and is helpful to you (and your guests).
Hatimah tovah and hag same’ah
Rabbi Rashi Simon