Ethiopian Jews celebrate Sigd
Ethiopian Jews celebrate SigdFlash 90

Thousands of Ethiopian Jews in Israel celebrated the Sigd holiday on Wednesday at Jerusalem's Armon Hanatziv Promenade overlooking the Temple Mount, in an event attended by President Reuven Rivlin.

Sigd falls on the 29th of the Hebrew month of Heshvan, the 50th day after the Yom Kippur fast. Traditionally, the day is split into two: a lengthy service featuring prayers, supplications and fasting, and a festive meal at night.

The holiday is a yearly reacceptance of the Torah, modeled after the ceremony led by Ezra the Scribe in the month of Heshvan when the Jews returned from Babylon to build the Second Temple (Nehemiah 9:1-3).

Ethiopian Jews kept the tradition in Ethiopia and it has special significance in Israel as a personal exodus and redemption into the modern state of Israel. Sigd became an official state holiday in 2010.

Flash 90, Mark Neyman/GPO