Israeli Women Tear Down Centuries Old Gender Barrier at the Western Wall

Israeli Women Tear Down Centuries Old Gender Barrier at the Western Wall

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Western Wall CC Edmund N Gall

Women in Israel have had their prayers answered.

After a three decade-long battle, the Israeli government has agreed to let women pray alongside men at Jerusalem’s Western Wall, one of Judaism’s holiest sites.

The Wall is one of the few remaining remnants of the Second Jewish Temple, and rules allowed both men and women to pray at the wall — but never together.

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A group called Women of the Wall has held monthly protests for the past 27 years demanding the Israeli government bring down the virtual wall between genders and allow women and men to pray alongside one another.

Under a compromise approved by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet, a former archeological site will be turned into a plaza allowing mixed-gender prayers.

Costing nine million dollars, the plaza will be able to accommodate 1,200 people at a time, reports the CS Monitor.

RELATED:  Thousands of Women Protest for Peace in Jerusalem

“This landmark decision gives expression to a fundamental truth: there is more than one way to be Jewish,” Rabbis Noa Sattah and Gilad Kariv, of the Israel Religious Action Centre and the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism said in a joint statement. “There is more than one way to pray. There is more than one way to connect to Jewish traditions and identity.”

(WATCH the video below from the Associated Press) — Photo: Edmund N Gall, CC

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