A few days before Christian’s holy day of Christmas, a very small group of four Jewish women were arrested for carrying prayer shawls to pray at their holiest site, what we call the Wailing Wall. Only men can carry the Torah and wear prayer shawls when praying at the Wall. Women are barred from the men’s side of the Wailing Wall and have their own secluded section.
Rochel Sylvetsky, managing editor of the English edition Israel National News, is like many Baptist women and do not think these ‘feminist’ women should be bucking tradition. Read what she says:
Torah doesn’t change because of the “modern” century, it deals with the century’s problems in the light of its precepts. One of those most basic foundations is modesty and another is family peace.(family being the nuclear one and the national one) .
Therefore, the above mitzvahs, for which women don’t get “brownie points” because they are not commanded to do them, but which they are allowed to do if they wish, must be kept in adherence to the halakhic limitations of mechitza (gender separation) during prayers, an unchanging position – although this is a very permissive sexual period in history.
Further in the article: And the way to deal with division is not to cause more division, but to be understanding and empathetic and respect those that were at the Kotel way before the WOW’s (Women of the Wall) were born.
I might add, that although there are sincere women among them, Reform and Conservative forces are certainly using the issue for their own purposes. After all, it goes over well in the media to use the “equality” and “rights” words, whether apt or not, and those much-abused words trump all.
You may member that I began my own Christian woman protest in 2006 at the Wailing Wall. I posted My New-Birth right again on August 2012. I am copying a portion of that here:
Ariel Sharon lay in a coma in a room nearby where Don and I stood at the Hadassah Ein Keremin Hospital in Jerusalem. We were standing at the same spot that Shepherd Smith of Fox News had stood just a few days before while he sent back a news report of the Prime Minister’s condition. But we were not there to see Ariel Sharon. We were there to see the synagogue where the famous artist Marc Chagall had created the 12 stained glass windows of the 12 Tribes of Israel.
As we prepared to enter the synagogue, Don was told to put on a small hat so his head would be covered before he entered the synagogue. He picked up a handmade hat made of black construction paper and stapled together which gave compliance to the head covering rule. A young man of 14 or so entered the synagogue briefly and before he stepped in, his arm went up and his hand spread out over his head so his head would be covered.
Don sat on one side of the synagogue while I sat on the other side. Our group consisted of Don and another man and me.
One day we went to see the tomb of King David. It was in a small room, separated down the middle by a curtain. Don entered on one side and I entered from the other. There was a woman under the table covering lying prostrate on the floor praying. I could see her feet moving under the table covering.
The Wailing Wall is a place of prayer and most tourists want to go to the wall when they are in Jerusalem. There is a courtyard where people mill around and down at the end is the Wall. We could see many men lined up against the wall praying, rocking back and forth as they often do. Many had black clothes and black hats. There was a section screened off and I was told that it was the women’s section and that I had to go over there to a separate entrance. It was on a slight decline and I could see chairs up against the screen barricade. Those chairs were placed there so the women could climb up on them to see.
Thus began my protest. I stood in the courtyard – proud. And alone. I was a Christian woman and this is the 21st century and I will not be treated as if I were a Jewish woman. I have been saved by grace and given the freedom through Christ that He gave all his children, male and female.
Will you join with these Jewish women who are claiming their equality? They should not have to stand alone. Christian women, come beside your sisters and join them as they seek equality in worship. Let us be the WOWs’ JOJS(translated: Be the Women of the Wall’s sisters (Join with Jewish Sisters).