|Women of the Wall during a previous Rosh Chodesh - Photo by Tanya Hoffman|
And each one would know that on Friday, May 10, 2013 more than any day in the past 25 years, her presence and her courage would be needed at the Kotel. Whether she was afraid didn’t matter. What mattered was her presence and her prayer.
|The Kotel circa 1942 - courtesy of Podnox|
The idea that crowds of people could actually be angry with a group of Jewish women for praying at the Western Wall seemed amazing to many who watched the events unfold on their computer screens that night. Jews – both women and men – have been coming to the Kotel to pray, to seek refuge and to reaffirm heritage for thousands of years. Reform, Conservative, Reconstructionist and Renewal Jews have davened at the Kotel for decades, if not centuries, just as have an equally diverse spectrum of Orthodox and Haredi Jews.
|Photo by Andy Ratton|
But what seemed incomprehensible to me was not that there had been feelings of betrayal and scorn toward the court decision to let women don tallisim at the Kotel, but that on a day that Jews everywhere attached to spiritual expression, there was anything but joy being expressed at the foot of the Kotel.
“Rosh Chodesh,” explains Chabad on its website, “means the “head of the new (moon),” and indeed it is a day—or two—of celebration marking the start of a new lunar month.”
|Photo by Shoshanah|