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      Festive Meal in Anticipation of Holy Temple

      The annual "Temple Mount Dinner" will take place this coming Monday night in the Binyanei HaUmah Convention Center in Jerusalem. Close to 1,000 people are expected.
      First Publish: 1/22/2005, 5:55 PM / Last Update: 1/21/2005, 11:58 AM

      Rabbi Yosef Elboim, one of the organizers, explained some of the background to this unusual event: "This will be our 11th annual dinner, and it shows that we mean what we say when we pray three times a day about our desire for a return to the Holy Temple. We would like to have permission to light the Menorah twice a day and to bring the ketoret twice a day, as these are actual Biblical commandments that are applicable today. We are actively preparing by studying and involving ourselves so that we will be ready when the time comes."

      "There are [many] Biblical commandments that are important to us," Rabbi Elboim continued, "that we perform with a festive meal – such as a wedding, brit milah (ritual circumcision), finishing a course of Torah study, etc. Maimonides made a feast every year on the day that he went up to Temple Mount, on the 6th of Cheshvan."

      One of the main sponsors of the event is past- and future-U.S. Senate primaries candidate in South Carolina, Orly Benny Davis. She arrived in Israel this week for the purpose of "talking about the issue of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount." To begin with, she is pushing for U.S. President Bush to fulfill his pledge to move the American Embassy to Jerusalem:
      "We have to realize that Israel's capital is still not recognized as such in the international arena, and Palestinians are running around the world and talking about Jerusalem as their capital... If we don't make sure that the Bush Administration moves the Embassy to Jerusalem, we will have failed."

      "We in the right-wing camp must keep our focus," she continued. "We must always keep in mind that our belonging to this Land is because of our Biblical connection, and not just because of some liberal-type idea that we returned home after 2,000 years. If you don't have Jerusalem and the Temple Mount, then you don't have the strength that is needed to talk about the rest of the Land. Jerusalem is still not recognized as our capital. We are there physically, but the Knesset is actually on land that doesn't even belong to us [but rather to the Greek Orthodox Church – ed.]. We have to focus and unite on the right with the national call for our national home, with its heart in Jerusalem."

      Prof. Hillel Weiss, of the "Professors for a Strong Israel" organization, told Arutz-7 that Davis' intention to "bring peace and love within Israel, and from this to the entire world, via the Holy Temple, in accordance with the verse stating that the Temple will be a house of prayer for all nations."

      Panel discussions on Temple-related issues will take place before the festive meal, which is expected to draw nearly 1,000 people. Among the issues to be raised will be: "Are the State of Israel and the Temple Mount on a Collision Course?" and "The Temple Mount and the Temple in Jerusalem Economics."