Monday, October 22, 2012

Support for Anat Hoffman & Women of the Wall

In Jerusalem, at the Western Wall aka the Kotel, a Jewish woman was arrested last week for the crime of singing the Shema, i.e., praying. Her name is Anat Hoffman. She is currently the Director of the Israel Religious Action Center aka IRAC.

Click to learn what is actually illegal according to Israeli law

Background to the issue of a pluralistic group of women praying at the Wall may be found here.
There is also a 2009 story in the NY Times here.
An American perspective from the Jewish Journal may be found here.

Here are some links to the latest part of the struggle for egalitarian status in prayer at this site:

Why I was arrested for praying at the Western Wall via Huffington Post
Anat Hoffman after arrest in Haaretz
Police shackle Anat Hoffman for saying Sh'ma at the Kotel by Debra Nussbaum Cohen in the Jewish Daily Forward

Rabbi Laura Geller talks about Anat and Henrietta Szold
A view from the Velveteen Rabbi
Who has the right to pray at the Western Wall by Rabbi Daniel Brenner
What is the textual source of Kol Isha? by Rabbi Judith Abrams

There was a live webcast with Anat this evening. The most popular question for her was - how may we help to support her and the work of Women of the Wall? She replied with the following suggestions:

1.  sign the petition to liberate the Wall on the IRAC website.  The link is here.
2.  visit the Women of the Wall website
3.  buy the WOW tallit - Anat used some of the funds to pay her legal fees, and said that she loved the idea that the subversive act of wearing a tallit also supports the struggle in Israel
4.  Organise a Rosh Chodesh service outside the Israeli consulate in your home town
5.  Write your sentiments in the Jewish and the Israeli press
6.  Persuade your Israeli relatives to vote for measures to change the situation in Israel
7.  Donate financially whatever you can!

@kungfujew18 trawled the Twitterverse for us to bring this selection of Tweets sent during the webchat

You can join in also via projects such as
Hear O Israel: The Global Sh'ma Flashmob
Reclaim and Liberate the Kotel

btw, there were two other women arrested alongside Anat!

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