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Temple Gate Prayers Welcome Month of Chanukah

More than 1,000 Jews, under heavy security against Arab violence, sang and prayed Monday night in a march around ancient gates to the Temple Mount.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 11/17/2009, 12:12 PM / Last Update: 11/17/2009, 12:10 PM

Flash 90

More than 1,000 Jews, under heavy security against Arab violence, sang and prayed Monday night in the monthly march around ancient gates to the Temple Mount. Monday night’s event coincided with the eve of the Hebrew month of Kislev, when Jews around the world celebrate the holiday of Chanukah.

Singing prayers from the Book of Psalms has become a monthly celebration for several years, with dozens of police lining the Muslim and Christian quarters where Jews usually are not able to walk.

“We encircle the Temple Mount, reminding ourselves, the nation of Israel and maybe even G-d that the real place, the place, is inside there, on the Temple Mount,” said Rabbi Yossi Paley, one of the organizers of the event. “We hope that in addition to the Chanukah Menorahs, we will merit to light the candles of the Menorah in the Holy Temple."

An official of the group that arranges the prayers “Around the Gates” explained to IsraelNN TV, “The main goal is to define where we strive to be. We have been praying for 2,000 years for the rebuilding of the Holy Temple, we pray for this three times a day and every time we have a meal, and the question is – do we really mean it? Do we really strive to be where we pray to be?”

He said that the prayers at the closed gates to the Temple Mount is “our way to say that we really really wish to step on the land that G-d chose and we're experiencing here with great happiness the will to come close and express our desire for the rebuilding of the Holy Temple."