Oct. 22, 2012
Following the escalation of arrests of women who continue to attempt to exercise their right to pray at the Kotel (Western Wall), including Anat Hoffman, Executive Director of the Israel Religious Action Center, Rabbi Elyse Frishman, Senior Rabbi of Barnert Temple in Franklin Lakes, NJ, and editor of the Reform Movement's prayerbook, Mishkan Tefila, and others, the Reform Movement calls on “the government of Israel to remove the ultra-Orthodox authority that oversees the Kotel and ensure the rights of all Jewish people to pray at this holy site, men and women alike.” Add your name to a petition urging the Israeli government to ensure that oversight of the Kotel includes a range of Jewish views and voices and protects gender equality. Download a printable version of the petition and distribute it to friends, family and members of your congregation. Click the link on the right of this page to email the petition.
Petition on behalf of religious inclusion on the Western Wall Heritage Council
We, too, are Jewish. We, too, deserve a place at Judaism's holiest site
A call for the State of Israel to include on the Western Wall Heritage Council members who are not Orthodox so that multiple voices and religious views can be part of the administration of the Kotel.
We the undersigned believe the time is long overdue for our nation to recognize that there is more than one way to practice Judaism and to acknowledge the value and importance of supporting all denominations in Judaism. Israel’s Jewish heritage is a treasure that must be shared by all Jews and all Jews have a right to an equal voice in its stewardship.
1. Most of the Jews in the world are not Orthodox and;
2. The Western Wall is universally accepted as the holiest site in Judaism and;
3. The State of Israel was founded to be the physical and spiritual home for the entire Jewish people and;
4. The Government of Israel must protect every Jew's right to worship freely in the Jewish state and;
5. Currently, only one denomination is given seats on the Western Wall Heritage Council which means that the needs and sensibilities of most of the world’s Jews are not represented at Judaism’s holiest site.
THEREFORE - We urgently call on you to
1. Appoint members to the Western Wall Heritage Council that represent a cross section of the world’s Jewish population; and
2. Appoint members in a way that shows gender equality; in order to
3. Allow a real conversation to begin about how best to make the Western Wall a site that serves as the cornerstone of Jewish life around the world and not as a reminder of how the majority of Jews must accept one group’s interpretation of our shared heritage.