The Women’s Rabbinic Network (WRN), as the international support and advocacy organization for women in the Reform rabbinate, has supported Women of the Wall (WOW) since it began its efforts to secure a meaningful place at the Western Wall for women’s prayer. We identify fully with WOW’s mission to achieve the social and legal recognition of the right of women to wear prayer shawls, pray, and read from the Torah collectively and out loud at the Western Wall. For 25 years, many of our members have prayed with WOW, signed petitions on their behalf, contributed to legal efforts, and provided strategic assistance. Many of us are planning to celebrate Rosh Hodesh Kislev in Jerusalem with WOW, on November 4, 2013, for its 25th anniversary.
On October 7, 2013, WOW’s leadership announced that they “are prepared to be the catalyst and leaders of building a new, equal third section for all Jews to pray and celebrate at the Western Wall.” We affirm our support of WOW as it makes this landmark announcement. We stand with WOW as it insists on clarification of all aspects of the physical development of this third section of the Wall. We endorse their efforts to secure a new pluralistic model for the administration and leadership of this new, third section, which will provide a safe and sacred space for WOW and all Jews to pray with dignity and respect, autonomy and authority. We stand with Women of the Wall, and commit to continue our efforts to insure women’s presence and religious practice at the Wall.
Media Contact: Rabbi Jacqueline Koch Ellenson, Director