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‘Mini Yom Kippur’ as Jews Fast, Pray for Ulpana

Supporters fast, pray Tuesday in hopes of changing destruction decree. “May He who answered in Beit El answer us.”
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 6/19/2012, 11:26 AM

Prayers in the Ulpana neighborhood
Prayers in the Ulpana neighborhood
Flash 90

A fast was called for Tuesday in support of the Ulpana neighborhood of Beit El. Many supporters are fasting in a “mini Yom Kippur” in hopes of changing the decree.

The neighborhood is to be demolished within two weeks. The government may appeal for more time.

In the evening, residents of the neighborhood and supporters will gather for a special prayer service to beseech Heaven for divine mercy. “May He who answered Jacob in Beit El answer our prayers,” organizers said, quoting a verse from the Jewish prayer book.

The service will begin at 7 p.m. in the Ulpana neighborhood. Kabbalist Rabbi Yaakov Adas will be present, as will other rabbis and community leaders.

Women living in Beit El are planning an additional measure. Women will gather Thursday to fulfill the mitzvah (divine command) of “hafrashat challah,” in which a small piece of dough is taken before bread is baked.

“In the merit of this mitzvah, let our presence in the land grow stronger,” organizers of the challah initiative said.