Watch: Hundreds pray at Western Wall for end to coronavirus

Chinese embassy joins special service held at Western Wall praying for end to the coronavirus epidemic.

Hezki Baruch ,

Rabbi Eliyahu (center-right) leads the prayer service
Rabbi Eliyahu (center-right) leads the prayer service
Hezki Baruch

The chief rabbi of Tzfat, Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, led a mass-prayer service at the Western Wall Sunday afternoon praying for the end of the ongoing coronavirus epidemic centered around the city of Wuhan, in China.

Hundreds joined the prayer service, including Rabbi Uri Sherki, chairman of the Brit Olam – Noahide World Center; Rabbi Avi Berman, chief of the Orthodox Union’s Israel branch; Rabbi Amichai Eliyahu, chairman of the Assocation of Community Rabbis; Chabad emissaries from China; officials from the Chinese embassy in Israel, and dozens of Chinese citizens.

The service, which spanned both mincha (the traditional Jewish afternoon prayer) and maariv (the traditional Jewish evening prayer) included a special prayer on behalf of the people of China, a prayer read in Chinese, and the blowing of a shofar.

“So many people came out here today,” said Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, “and many more announced they were organizing their own prayer services in synagogues and schools in their communities.”

“The Chinese people need to know that they are in the hearts of the Jewish people, which is praying for them and is hoping for their success and wellbeing. When there is this kind of love in the world, God opens the gates of prayer and accepts our prayers. May it be His will that our prayers be answered, and that this epidemic among the Chinese people and across the world be stopped.”

Nearly 69,300 people have thus far been diagnosed with the coronavirus, the vast majority of them (over 68,500) in China.

One-thousand-six-hundred-and-seventy-one people have died as a result of the coronavirus according to the official count, while 9,883 people have recovered thus far.