Western Wall

Kotel Deal Headed To High Court?

Liberal leaders here and in Israel press case amid stalled implementation.

07/13/2016 - 08:24
Contributing Editor

Jerusalem — Frustrated over Israel’s stalled implementation of a compromise to establish a pluralistic prayer plaza at the Western Wall, an alliance of Israeli and North American liberal Jewish groups are vowing to escalate pressure on the ground at the Jerusalem holy site and in the Israeli courts.

USCJ’s Rabbi Steven Wernick, left, prays at Western Wall last week. Joshua Mitnick/JW

Western Wall Egalitarian Prayer Activists Say They Will Go To Supreme Court

07/11/2016 - 12:36

Jerusalem — The negotiating team supporting the implementation of the agreement to create an egalitarian prayer space at the Western Wall said it was planning to initiate legal action in Israel’s Supreme Court.

Conservative and Reform Jewish activists taking part in an egalitarian prayer service at the Western Wall Plaza, June 16. JTA

At Western Wall Egalitarian Service, Reform Head Calls For Pluralistic Prayer Space

07/05/2016 - 12:40

Jerusalem — The head of the U.S. Reform movement led egalitarian prayers at the Western Wall plaza.

Union for Reform Judaism president Rabbi Rick Jacobs, center, participating in a prayer service at the Western Wall. JTA

The Kotel Deal Isn’t Good Enough

02/23/2016 - 16:20
Special To The Jewish Week

When the Israeli cabinet voted 15-5 last month to approve a new egalitarian section of the Western Wall, it was hailed as a landmark decision, a triumph for the cause of religious pluralism in Israel.   After years of struggle by Women of the Wall and other progressive Jewish groups against ultra-Orthodoxy at the Kotel, it was indeed a noteworthy milestone. My celebration of this important decision, however, was more muted than many of my Conservative and Reform colleagues.

Rabbi Gil Steinlauf

Kotel Deal Cuts Both Ways

02/09/2016 - 15:50
Special To The Jewish Week

I have mixed feelings about the “historic” compromise reached about a week ago in Israel creating a new, egalitarian prayer space south of the Western Wall plaza. Worked out with the Israeli government by representatives of the Reform and Conservative movements, Women of the Wall and others, the compromise will create a large area for the liberal denominations and for the Women of the Wall to hold prayer services. The government and the Jewish Agency will fund the section, a precedent, perhaps, for official recognition of the non-Orthodox denominations in Israel.

Francine Klagsbrun

Western Wall Prayer Fight Ends With Historic Compromise

02/01/2016 - 11:16

Tel Aviv — Israel’s government on Sunday approved a compromise to expand the non-Orthodox Jewish prayer section of the Western Wall, putting to rest the decades-long fight between Women of the Wall and Israel’s haredi Orthodox religious establishment.

The Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem on a rainy day, Oct. 25, 2015. JTA

3 Maps That Explain The Western Wall Compromise

02/01/2016 - 11:09

The Western Wall compromise passed Sunday by Israel’s Cabinet represents a landmark interdemoninational consensus at what many consider to be Judaism’s holiest site.  But describing the deal can be confusing: One worship area will expand, the others will remain untouched and the site’s entrance will change.

Thousands gather at the Western Wall on Sept. 30, 2015 to receive the Priestly Blessing on the Sukkot holiday. JTA

US Jewish Groups Hail Mixed-Gender Western Wall Space

02/01/2016 - 11:05

Jerusalem — American Jews are celebrating an Israeli government decision to greatly expand — and fund — a pluralistic egalitarian prayer section adjacent to the Western Wall plaza as a first step toward official Israeli recognition of non-Orthodox streams of Judaism.

Women of the Wall, who retrieved a Torah scroll from the men’s prayer section despite regulations against women. RNS

Women Light Hanukkah Candles At Western Wall

12/06/2015 - 19:00

Jerusalem — About 100 women gathered at the Western Wall to light Hanukkah candles.

Women of the Wall lighting Hanukkah menorahs at the Western Wall on the first night of the holiday, Dec. 6, 2015. JTA

UNESCO To Vote On Proposal Declaring Western Wall A Muslim Site

Six Muslim Arab countries submitted the UNESCO proposal on behalf of the Palestinians.

10/19/2015 - 20:00

A Palestinian effort to have a United Nations agency declare Judaism’s holiest site a Muslim holy site is “an attempt to distort history,” Israel said.

Thousands gather at the Western Wall to receive the priestly blessing on the Sukkot holiday, Sept. 30, 2015. JTA
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