You are here

Share Share Share Share Share Share Share

Transcript of Sally Gottesman's 1974 letter to the ritual committee of Temple Shomrei Emunah, requesting a Saturday Morning Bat Mitzvah

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen of the Ritual Committee,

Next year I will have reached the age of my Bat Mitzvah and would like to have it on Saturday morning.

This means a great deal to me because since women play an important part of every role in Jewish life, why is my part in our Temple not equal to a boy's my age? This service may be strange to tradition for a little while but my question is “Im lo achshav ay ma-tai?”* My education is as complete as a boy my age. And knowing that I am an equal makes me want to continue my studies. Knowing I can't fully participate in any activity, when can I hope to achieve a first class status?

I would greatly appreciate if the Ritual Committee would change this practice and let girls be called to the Torah.

Very truly yours,

Sally Gottesman

*Translation of “Im lo achshav ay ma-tai?”: “If not now, when?” This famous saying from the sage Hillel appears in Pirkei Avot (Ethics of the Fathers, a section of Mishna).

Details

Courtesy of Sally Gottesman.

Rights
JWA use only on jwa.org
Date / time
May 27, 1974
Author(s)
Sally Gottesman
Pages

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Transcript of Sally Gottesman's 1974 letter to the ritual committee of Temple Shomrei Emunah, requesting a Saturday Morning Bat Mitzvah." (Viewed on December 21, 2014) <http://jwa.org/media/transcript-of-sally-gottesmans-1974-letter-to-ritual-committee-of-temple-shomrei-emunah>.

Donate

Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

Sign Up for JWA eNews

 

Discover Education Programs

Join our growing community of educators.

view programs