US Teen Contest Winners Reflect on Praying with WoW

This piece was first published in The Times of Israel.

Eliza Moss-Horwitz, Lucy Sattler and Alexandra Schwartz pray with Women of the Wall. Schwartz (right) holds an empty Torah cover beneath her prayer book, symbolizing the Torah scroll the group was prevented from bringing in to the Kotel plaza. (photo credit: Courtesy of Moving Traditions)

Eliza Moss-Horwitz, Lucy Sattler and Alexandra Schwartz pray with Women of the Wall. Schwartz (right) holds an empty Torah cover beneath her prayer book, symbolizing the Torah scroll the group was prevented from bringing in to the Kotel plaza. (photo credit: Courtesy of Moving Traditions)

The three American Jewish teens who won a contest to join the Women of the Wall at the Kotel Thursday say they will never forget the experience.

Eliza Moss-Horwitz, Lucy Sattler and Alexandra Schwartz were brought to Israel by Moving Traditions, a Philadelphia-based organization advocating for a more expansive view of gender in Jewish learning and practice.

The trio joined 200 members and supporters at the Women of the Wall’s Rosh Hodesh service January 2 marking the beginning of the Hebrew month of Shevat.

The service took place with little disturbance. However, the women were denied permission to enter the Western Wall plaza with a Torah scroll.

“It was one of the most incredible days of my life,” said Moss-Horwitz, 16, of Northampton, Massachusetts. “In school we talk about people making change, but here I was actually seeing people making change.”

“It was empowering to see all these women fighting together for something so significant and relevant,” said 15-year-old Sattler, who was in Israel for a five-day visit from Evanston, Illinois.

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

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