MK Yisrael Eichler (United Torah Judaism) explained on Monday afternoon his decision to use the right granted to him as a Knesset member to ascend to the grave of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai in Meron on Lag B'Omer.
"What the Almighty is to all, Rabbi Shimon also is to all. Especially during a difficult year like this, when a decree was ordered for Jews to come to Rashbi's tomb to ask for salvation, it is the duty of everyone who is allowed to do so to come and pray, and beg on behalf of all for salvation and consolation," Eichler said.
Later, MK Eichler responded to MK Moshe Gafni's call for Knesset members to avoid attending Lag B'Omer celebrations in Meron, "Those who have not longed for Meron and never come there on Lag B'Omer, at the very least should not preach morals to the rabbi's messengers who were allowed to come and pray. They received requests last week from the masses of Jews in Israel and from around the world whose hearts go out to Meron who asked [for us] to stand and pray for them and for all of Israel."
He issued a prayer to G-d. "Be with the groups who have been sent by the House of Israel, who are going to beg, pray and supplicate before you for your people, the House of Israel to stop the epidemic and abolish the decrees. In the merit of Rashbi, may mercy and kindness and good and abundance will overflow for all Jews who desire to ascend to Zion."
The MK later remarked on a personal note, "At first I thought I would not ascend to Meron this year. But I felt obligated to come and pray with devotion as a public envoy for the tens of thousands of Jews who were unable tio make it."
"Anyone who wants me to mention his name there can send his name and mother's name to this e-mail: email@example.com," Eichler concluded.