Religion Magazine

Birkat Kohanot on Rosh Chodesh is Different

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
The Women of the Wall held their monthly Rosh Chodesh services at the Kotel today. By now this should pass almost unnoticed and should definitely not be noteworthy in any way. However, they altered their service, somewhat.
Birkat Kohanot on Rosh Chodesh is different As part of their Rosh Chodesh davening the Women of the Well performed a Birkat Kohanot ceremony - the same one they were legally prevented from performing during their Pesach Chol Hamoed services.
The women were cordoned off and protected during their services, and opponents were kept away by the police. People describe the event as being hurtful and the level of degradation suffered being indescribably painful.
The women's argument in response is a bit strange. They claim a difference between Chol Hamoed services with Birkat Kohanot and Rosh Chodesh services. They said "the letter from the Ministry of Religious Services related to the Birkat Kohanot ceremony on Chol Hamoed Pesach. It is not at all similar to the Birkat Kohanot that takes place during the Rosh Chodesh davening. The Rosh Chodesh prayers are prayers that are not under dispute in any way.
Do they mean their holding Rosh Chodesh services are not under dispute, while Pesach services are? Meaning, because the opponents have lost on that point, the dispute no longer exists?
Or, does it mean the existence of the Birkat Kohanot ceremony during Rosh Chodesh services is not under dispute but during Pesach services it is? Why would that be? Where do we ever see a ceremony of Birkat Kahanot, anywhere, ever, that they could make such a statement with a straight face? Are they really trying to claim that everyone agrees and is fine with with the Birkat Kohanot ceremony on Rosh Chodesh? Maybe it was never disputed because it was not announced in advance so nobody had time to dispute it.
It is a bit of a crazy and senseless response.
One thing that is clear is that had they not announced the Birkat Kohanot event of Pesach in advance, they most likely would have gotten away with it. Sometimes it is best to keep quiet, unless the real goal is to make noise and not necessarily hold the event.
source: Kikar
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