Rabbanit Tzipi Lau at Women's Shelter: You, too, are now freed

Wife of Chief Rabbi pays emotional pre-Pesach visit to Bat Melech Religious Women's Shelter.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Bat Melech visit
Bat Melech visit
INN: Debbie Rapp

In an emotional visit to a shelter for battered women run by the Bat Melech organization, which runs the only shelters in Israel for religious victims of domestic violence, Rabbanit Tzipi Lau, wife of Israel’s Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Lau, delivered a powerful message of strength and encouragement in advance of the upcoming Pesach holiday.

“On the eve of Pesach, women who have suffered from abuse identify with the Festival of Freedom in a powerful and symbolic way,” said Noach Korman, Bat Melech Founder and Director. “Each woman is going through a process of freedom from the enslavement of abuse and domestic violence. We are very grateful to Rebbetzin Lau for coming to strengthen these women, and for sharing her beautiful words of encouragement with us.”

“Our rabbis tell us that every Rosh Chodesh is a special holiday for women,” said Rabbanit Lau, addressing shelter residents and staff. “Each month the moon grows from something we can’t even see, to an object that brings us more light each day. With every month we experience renewal, a new beginning. So too the shelter gives light, strength and the opportunity for a new beginning.”

"Like Miriam the Prophetess, whose difficult choice to watch over her infant brother Moshe saved the Jewish people, you made a difficult choice to leave your home and watch over your children. Miriam took her drum and led the celebration of our freedom. By coming to the shelter you displayed initiative, leadership and inner strength, saving yourselves and your children.

"This is something to celebrate, and is an experience from which I hope you will only grow,” the Rabbanit concluded.

Several women shared their personal stories and described the transformation they experienced since arriving at the shelter. Rabbanit Lau was clearly moved as she heard the women talk about making the decision to leave an abusive marriage and everything that was familiar to them.

"It is commanded that Pesach, the holiday of redemption, must be celebrated in the spring, teaching us about the connection between the external environment and inner redemption,” said Bat Melech Chairwoman Tzilit Jacobson. “Bat Melech will continue to provide an environment that will allow each and every one of you to grow and blossom again, to begin a new life from a place of inner strength."

Bat Melech provides shelter, therapeutic counseling, legal services, childcare and transitional aid to religious victims of domestic abuse in Israel, running the only two kosher, Shabbat observant shelters in the country and has housed over 5,000 women and children since opening its first shelter in 1996. The Bat Melech hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Bat Melech’s Israel Center for Family Justice provides legal representation in secular and religious courts, as well as free legal services for women of all backgrounds, guiding them through the intricacies of Israeli family law and has assisted 20,000 women to date.

(Accompanying photo: Rabbanit Tzipi Lau is seen with Bat Melech staff during a recent visit to Bat Melech’s Jerusalem shelter. From left: Einat Engelman, Salit Geva, Orly Tobolski-Hadad, Rabbanit Tzipi Lau, Bat Melech Chairwoman Tzilit Jacobson.)