- Title: 'Notes to God' cleared from holy site ahead of the Jewish New Year
- Date: 27th September 2016
- Summary: JERUSALEM (SEPTEMBER 27, 2016) (REUTERS) WESTERN WALL PEOPLE CLEANING CRACKS IN WESTERN WALL FROM NOTES TO GOD AHEAD OF JEWISH NEW YEAR VARIOUS OF WESTERN WALL RABBI SHMUEL RABINOWITZ CLEANING NOTES FALLING ON GROUND (SOUNDBITE) (Hebrew) WESTERN WALL RABBI SHMUEL RABINOWITZ SAYING: "Every year, ahead of the Jewish New Year and ahead of Passover, we clear the notes from the Western Wall. We don't open them, we protect them so that they remain closed and we bury them at the Mount of Olives." VARIOUS OF MAN CLEANING CRACKS FROM NOTES VARIOUS OF ULTRA ORTHODOX MAN BLOWING THE TRADITION 'SHOFAR', OR RAM'S HORN VARIOUS OF WORSHIPPER PUTTING NOTE INSIDE CRACK
- Embargoed: 12th October 2016 11:47
- Keywords: Israel Jewish New Year Western Wall Jerusalem Notes
- Location: JERUSALEM
- City: JERUSALEM
- Country: Israel
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA00151CCKSN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: The Western Wall's chief rabbi and a team of workers on Tuesday (September 27) cleared from its ancient cracks notes to God left by worshippers to make room for new ones ahead of the Jewish New Year.
Western Wall staff used brooms and wooden sticks so as not to harm the ancient stones of the holy site, revered by Jews as a perimeter wall of the Biblical temple.
Millions of people visit the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest site, every year, leaving written prayers on pieces of paper wedged into the cracks of the ancient worship site.
Chief Rabbi of the Western Wall Shmuel Rabinowitz and his team collect hundreds of thousands of notes twice a year-- ahead of the Jewish New Year and Passover.
"Every year, ahead of the Jewish New Year and ahead of Passover, we clear the notes from the Western Wall. We don't open them, we protect them so that they remain closed and we bury them at the Mount of Olives", Rabinowitz said.
He added that they have never counted the number of scripted prayers, but in each collection there are enough to fill about 100 shopping bags, each with thousands of notes.
He says some letters are sent to the wall by fax or email -- often for a small fee.
Leaving notes of prayers and pleads has been adopted by members of many faiths around the world. It is very common for Christian pilgrims travelling through the Old City of Jerusalem to stop by the Western Wall and leave a note, the rabbi said.
The Western Wall is a remnant of the compound of the Second Temple that was destroyed in 70 AD. It stands today beneath a religious plaza known to Muslims as al-Haram al-Sharif and to Jews as the Temple Mount.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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