Rosh Chodesh Av at the Western Wall

In Jerusalem, Israel, on Rosh Chodesh Av, 

thousands of people had a very early start to their day.

image crowd at Kotel, Western Wall photo

Arriving near the Kotel, the Western Wall Plaza at 7:00 am, this was the scene.

image from Kosel women of wall

A group of young men, 

imge Kosel , picture Kossel

and boys,

picture women of wall, image Kosel protest

 one woman with a whistle and one with signs

image Women of Wall, photo Women of Wall

were protesting against the Women of the Wall’s Rosh Chodesh prayer service.

image Women of Wall, picture from Kosel

Not all the WOW were praying–

some were talking to the press, as there were plenty of cameras again.

image Kossel, Kosel men section photo, picture Kosel

The regular men’s section was not crowded,

Women of Wall , image Kosel, picutre Kossel

  Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem Yitzhak Pindrus was there.

imgae Women for Wall, picture Women of Wall

It was the women’s section that was full.

Kosel picture, Kossel photo

Women for the Wall had brought out thousands of religious women and girls.

They continued to pray silently, in stark contrast to the noisy protesters,

image Kosel, Picture Kosel

though there was not enough space for all of them 

Women for the Wall, photo, Image Women of Wall

and the group extended well into the Western Wall Plaza.

 While the Women of the Wall and Women for the Wall were the center of attention,

 I liked these scenes.

scene from Women of Wall

At least a few of the security people found time to pray.

photo Bar Mitzvah at Kosel

And in the middle of it all there was a Bar Mitzvah celebration.

Wonder if someone thought that with an early start it would be less crowded? 

image Women of Wall , picture Rosh Chodesh Av at Kosel

The Women of the Wall were not happy with their site and the police.

image Women of Wall, picture Women of Wall at Kotel

After their service had ended, and after singing Hatikvah, 

the Women of Wall group continued singing before going to their buses.

There has been lots of chatter on Facebook about both groups, 

 with some good, some bad and some ugly comments. 

The two sides do not seem to be getting closer

and many people do not want to hear or think about this conflict any more.

But I would really like to know,

image Women of Wall, picture Kosel

what the Deputy Mayor was thinking at this moment?

0 thoughts on “Rosh Chodesh Av at the Western Wall

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  • July 9, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    Love the shot of the security guards davening!

  • July 10, 2013 at 8:12 am

    Happy to see so many women supporting prayer at the wall…now if we could only get the men who are supportive out in huge numbers…what are some of those other men and the woman with the whistle thinking…obviously not about prayer!

    • July 10, 2013 at 8:51 am

      Maybe a new custom will come out of this mess? There was a loud speaker in the men’s section like on the holidays for the Priestly Blessing, so that there was one main prayer service that could be heard and followed instead of the usual balgan of lots of small ones that the woman cannot hear.

  • July 10, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Excellent photos as usual. Why can’t the haredim live and let live!!
    The only good thing one can say about all the haredi girls is that at least they were quiet, and did in fact appear to be davening- more than one can say for some of the haredi men who come out to protest.

    • July 10, 2013 at 4:52 pm

      Calling them “men” is being generous, they get younger and less everytime. It was a few haredi women who made the most noise and were not part of Women 4 Wall

  • July 10, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Sharon, Once again thank you for bringing us the sights. Sorry I cld not locate my granddaughter among the multitudes. Since she has shown she can rise early she will no longer be excused from morning swim.Kidding aside , this is real proof of true devotion to our ancient heritage and its sacred values. Wonder what wld happen if the media didn’t show up.

  • July 10, 2013 at 10:29 am

    W4W faced Har HaBayit and WOW faced the cameras…
    The facts are made by those who pray at the Kotel all month long.
    I was praying at a more ancient prayer site, that of the Mishkan at Tel Shiloh. It’s so much more peaceful there…

  • July 10, 2013 at 11:40 am

    it is absolutely unfathomable to me that any person who wants to pray to Hashem feels the urge to prevent another person from praying, in any way, shape or form. There are millions of Jews around the world who are so far from Yiddishkeit and billions of dollars being spent by frum, caring Kiruv organizations, Taglit-Birthright Israel and various individuals to bring them just a little closer to their Jewish roots so their kids stand a chance of growing up Jewish; There are over a million Jewish Israelis who claim they don’t care whether or not their kids marry a Jewish spouse, do not care to keep chometz out of their homes and public sphere on Pesach, are not interested in Shabbat observance or other religious rituals and what concerns Jews praying by the wall/for the wall are a dozen women who want to Daven??in an unconventional way??Really???

  • July 11, 2013 at 3:16 am

    I have to tell you that I find this entire issue very upsetting. I support WoW and I support W4W. What I don’t support is the nasty disrespect that says there is only one way to be a Jew in this world. Yes there are specific “items” that delineate a Jew but beyond that it is merely human and an only male interpretation. While the powers that be lament how Jewish children are not brought up to care about the Jewish people, the issue should be that maybe it has something to do with the disrespect given to those that don’t practice a particular version of Judaism that alienates the young. Having gone from orthodox to conservative to reform to now completely unaffiliated I have found disrespect and condescension throughout the Jewish world towards the “other” Jews. People are entitled to pray the way that reaches their heart and brings them to hashem. It is not for someone else to tell you what you feel in your heart. I truly am tired of those lost in the 15th century telling me how I can pray, what I can do and not do as a woman and what I am allowed to feel or not feel towards my religion, my history and the Land of Israel. I am tired of the men who think they can spit on me because I do not wear their version of clothing.(yes that has happened to me in NY). Jews pray for the coming of the Messiah. Does it not dawn on all those praying that this disrespect for each other is what keeps him from our midsts.

    • July 11, 2013 at 7:32 am

      Thank you for your well thought out and articulated comment. I think you expressed very well the majority opinion, certainly from what I have heard.

  • July 11, 2013 at 9:21 am

    I am so sorry so many of you do not recognize torah she baal peh. Women have a role and men have a role and a cohen has a role and a levi has a role. A doctor does one thing and a lawyer does his thing. No man however much he wants equality can ever physically carry a baby to term and nurse it. The fact that am yisrael has different roles shows that we need unity to make o e complete unit called Am Yisrael. The style which we have practiced throughout the millenia is not dictated by males, but from Torah she Baal peh.

  • July 12, 2013 at 10:36 am

    This blog post has been included in Shiloh Musings: Nine Days’ Havel Havelim, What to Read Online.  Please visit and of course share and read & share all of the other posts included in this edition.  If you haven’t already, you’re welcome to join the Havel Havelim jblog community.
    Shabbat Shalom u’Mevorach
    May you and your dear ones enjoy a very blessed and peaceful Shabbat.

  • July 15, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Loved the pictures of the security guards praying. From your pictures it does seem like everyone had a chance to express themselves properly.

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