Women of the Wall Hold Monthly Prayer at Kotel Without Torah Scroll

No Sign of Ultra-Orthodox Protesters at Holy Site

Kotel Protest: Women wearing prayer shawls pray at their monthly protest at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.
getty images
Kotel Protest: Women wearing prayer shawls pray at their monthly protest at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

By JTA

Published January 02, 2014.
  • Print
  • Share Share

About 200 Women of the Wall held their monthly morning service at the Western Wall, but were refused permission to bring their own Torah scroll to the plaza.

The women marked the new Jewish month of Shevat with their Rosh Chodesh service on Jan. 2.

Unlike in past months, there were few protests against the women’s service. Thousands of Orthodox girls had turned out in past months to demonstrate against the group and block it from the women’s section, but this was not the case on Thursday.

The service was delayed while women waited at the Western Wall security entrance in order to receive permission to bring in their own Torah scroll, the organization said in a statement. As it was last month, that request was denied. The women’s request to use one of the dozens of Torah scrolls housed at the Western Wall for public use also was denied, the group said.

Several leaders of Women of the Wall remained outside the Western Wall plaza holding the Torah scroll while the prayer service took place in the women’s section of the plaza.

The group has met for a women’s prayer service at the wall at the beginning of each Jewish month for the past quarter-century.

The Israeli government has been working to end the conflict at the wall. Under a compromise solution penned by Jewish Agency for Israel Chairman Natan Sharansky, there would be a significant expansion of an area to the south of the Western Wall plaza called Robinson’s Arch that is now used for non-Orthodox prayer.

After backing away from the plan, Women of the Wall endorsed it in October, agreeing to move to the new section should a list of conditions be fulfilled.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • "We are not so far removed from the tragedies of the past, and as Jews sit down to the Seder meal, this event is a teachable moment of how the hatred of Jews-as-Other is still alive and well. It is not realistic to be complacent."
  • Aperitif Cocktail, Tequila Shot, Tom Collins or Vodka Soda — Which son do you relate to?
  • Elvis craved bacon on tour. Michael Jackson craved matzo ball soup. We've got the recipe.
  • This is the face of hatred.
  • What could be wrong with a bunch of guys kicking back with a steak and a couple of beers and talking about the Seder? Try everything. #ManSeder
  • BREAKING: Smirking killer singled out Jews for death in suburban Kansas City rampage. 3 die in bloody rampage at JCC and retirement home.
  • Real exodus? For Mimi Minsky, it's screaming kids and demanding hubby on way down to Miami, not matzo in the desert.
  • The real heroines of Passover prep aren't even Jewish. But the holiday couldn't happen without them.
  • Is Handel’s ‘Messiah’ an anti-Semitic screed?
  • Meet the Master of the Matzo Ball.
  • Pierre Dulaine wants to do in his hometown of Jaffa what he did for kids in Manhattan: teach them to dance.
  • "The first time I met Mick Jagger, I said, 'Those are the tackiest shoes I’ve ever seen.'” Jewish music journalist Lisa Robinson remembers the glory days of rock in her new book, "There Goes Gravity."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.