Shmuel Rabinovich, Western Wall Rabbi, Supports Mixed Gender Prayer Section
JERUSALEM — The rabbi of Judaism’s holiest prayer site on Wednesday endorsed a proposal to establish a section where men and women can worship together, a groundbreaking motion that could end a decades-old fight against an Orthodox monopoly of the area.
The fight over the Western Wall has reached a fever pitch in recent months, after police arrested female worshippers who prayed at the site wearing religious garments and leading prayers - acts that Orthodox Judaism permits for men only.
The arrests caused an uproar in Israel and among liberal Jewish leaders in the United States, prompting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to instruct the semi-governmental Jewish Agency to devise a plan that would permit non-Orthodox forms of worship at the holy site.
The Western Wall’s rabbi, Shmuel Rabinovich, told Army Radio Wednesday that while he dislikes non-Orthodox prayer, he would tolerate it in a separate section in order to end intra-Jewish fighting at the site.
“I want everyone to pray according to Orthodox Jewish religious law, but I don’t interfere,” said Rabinovich, who is Orthodox. “If these things can be done at the Western Wall without hurting others, and this can bring about compromise and serenity, I don’t object.”
Read more at Huffington Post.
I am not a big fan of “Women of the Wall” but they have a right to hold their services without being attacked and yelled at.
Jesus said about prayer:
6:5 “Whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray while standing in synagogues 7 and on street corners so that people can see them. Truly I say to you, they have their reward. 6:6 But whenever you pray, go into your room, 8 close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you.”
Isaiah said about prayer:
When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts?
13 Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting.
14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.
15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.
16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;
17 Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.
Also there was Korach, (Numbers 16) who paraded around in a big fancy tallis and got eated by Teh Desert Sarlacc.