Birchas Kohanim at the Kosel on the First Day of Chol Hamoed

Kohanim seen at the mass Birchas Kohanim on Monday, the first day of Chol Hamoed in Eretz Yisrael. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

The Birchas Kohanim was held in an exciting and grand gathering, especially after last Pesach and Sukkos when the gathering was held in a limited format only. This year, the Birchas Kohanim was celebrated with a large crowd, accompanied by the Nerananah choir which entertained the crowd. Many police and soldiers were on duty to prevent attacks on the mispallelim, and baruch Hashem, no security events were reported.

The Birchas Kohanim of this Pesach was attended by the Chief Rabbis of Israel Rishon LeZion Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef, shlita, and Rabbi Dovid Lau, shlita, the Rav haKosel and the Mikomos Hakedoshos Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, shlita. Also in attendance were Minister of Religion Rabbi Yaakov Avitan, Mayor of Jerusalem Mr. Moshe Leon and Deputy Minister of the Interior MK Yoav Ben-Zur. Rabbi Rabinowitz and Rabbi Mordechai Gefner, the so of the originator of the Birchas Kohanim ceremony at the Kosel, led the tefillos.

At the end of this tefillos, a “kabalas ole Malchus Shamayim” was held by the Rishon LeZion, Rabbi Yosef, shlita, and the Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi Dovid Lau, shlita. A special tefillah of thanks to Hakadosh Baruch Hu for the improvement of the corona situation in Israel was offered by Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, shlita, along with a tefillah for the safety of the world in light of the corona pandemic.

“The Birchas Kohanim written in the Torah has a promise of protection from the destructive forces and for peace for Klal Yisrael,” Rabbi Rabinowitz said. “In these difficult times, we need this blessing many times over, with prayers for peace for the Jewish nation and for all the inhabitants of the world.”

“This year, we mark the Jubilee of the Birchas Kohanim celebration, which began almost 50 years ago through the founding of Rabbi Menachem Mendel Geffner, and has been organized for years by the Western Wall Heritage Foundation.”

The Birchas Kohanim will be repeated in the same format on Tuesday, the second day of Chol Hamoed in Eretz Yisrael, in order to accommodate the public who were not able to attend on Monday, the first day of Chol Hamoed in Eretz Yisrael. Shacharis will be at 8:45 am, with its Birchas Kohanim at 9:15 am; Mussaf with begin at 10:00 am, and its Birchas Kohanim will be at 10:15 am.

(Reuters/Ronen Zvulun)
(Reuters/Ronen Zvulun)
(Reuters/Ronen Zvulun)

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