Tag Archives: Wailing Wall

Mayor Barkat welcomes swifts nesting at the Kotel – Jerusalem

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men stand on a balcony in the Jewish Quarter and view a welcoming ceremony for thousands of swifts returning from South Africa to nest in the Western Wall as spring and breeding season arrive. Jerusalem, Israel. 12-Mar-2012.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, Mrs. Naomi Tsur, Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem, Dr. Yossi Leshem, from the Tel-Aviv University and Society for the Protection of Nature and Amnonn Hahn, General Manager of “FRIENDS OF THE SWIFTS” Association in Israel take part in a welcoming ceremony for thousands of swifts returning from South Africa to nest in the Western Wall as spring and breeding season arrive.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat addresses guests at a welcoming ceremony for thousands of swifts returning from South Africa to nest in the Western Wall as spring and breeding season arrive. Jerusalem, Israel. 12-Mar-2012.

The Western Wall in Jerusalem serves as one of the oldest Common Swift nesting sites in the world. A special study to map the nests was conducted in 2002 by the researcher, Mr. Ulrich Tigges and by the late Prof. Mendelssohn during which 88 nests were noted. This study map served as a guideline during the work of strengthening the Western Wall, keeping the nests unblocked.

Jerusalem Mayor Mr. Nir Barkat and Deputy Mayor Ms. Naomi Tsur exchange words at a welcoming ceremony for thousands of swifts returning from South Africa to nest in the Western Wall as spring and breeding season arrive. Jerusalem, Israel. 12-Mar-2012.

However, the future of the Common Swift is not secure at all and their future is at risk. The FRIENDS OF THE SWIFTS Association, the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel and Tel-Aviv University are working together to promise the future of the Common Swift by all available means: saving existing nesting sites, designing and building new ones, special educational programs in schools, assisting Wildlife Rehabilitation Centers, and PR activities to increase public awareness of this special bird and the problems it faces.

Jerusalem Mayor Mr. Nir Barkat (C) and Deputy Mayor Ms. Naomi Tsur (R) receive a book on ornithology from Dr. Yossi Leshem (L), of the Tel-Aviv University and Society for the Protection of Nature. Jerusalem, Israel. 12-Mar-2012.

The Common Swift is a unique bird that spends most of its life on the wing. It feeds on flying insects, which it hunts in the air, it drinks while flying, it sleeps on the wing and it even mates on the wing at the beginning of the breeding season. The Common Swift spends most of the time living in South Africa in dense colonial groups and at the beginning of spring starts migrating north to its breeding sites. During mid-February it arrives in Israel, which is known to be one of its first breeding sites, and migrates back to Africa at the beginning of June, immediately after its nestlings have fledged. It is a small bird, weighing only 35 – 45 grams, but is a superior flier, an aerial acrobat. It has a thin, short body and impressive, long, scythe-like wings with an outstanding aspect ratio. Ever since humans have started building cities, the Common Swift has found our buildings perfect for nesting sites including ancient holy sites such as churches, synagogues, mosques and temples, and has become dependent on us.

Swifts begin to congregate above the Western Wall in the late hours of the afternoon in a brilliant aerobatic display of flight capabilities. The Western Wall in Jerusalem serves as one of the oldest Common Swift nesting sites in the world. Jerusalem, Israel. 12-Mar-2012.

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Threat Closes Temple Mount to Non-Muslims – Jerusalem

Jerusalem District Police Commander, Niso Shacham, instructs closure of the Temple Mount to non-Muslims following publication saying “Purify the Temple Mount of land-stealing enemies of Israel”. Jerusalem, Israel. 12th February 2012.

In an effort to prevent an outbreak of riots, Jerusalem District Police Commander, Niso Shacham, instructed the closure of the Temple Mount and Al-Aqsa compound to Jews and tourists this morning. Fliers discovered called supporters to “purify the Temple Mount of land-stealing enemies of Israel”, allegedly signed by far-right Likud member Moshe Feiglin. Feiglin denies any connection to the publication. The Al-Aqsa compound remains open to Muslim worshippers.

Riot Police reinforced in numbers on hand to maintain order near the Mugrabi Bridge as Jerusalem District Police Commander, Niso Shacham, instructs closure of the Temple Mount to non-Muslims. Jerusalem, Israel. 12th February 2012.

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City Engineer closes the Mugrabi Ramp – Jerusalem

Tourists are unable to visit the Temple mount as City Engineer orders immediate closure of Mugrabi Ramp due to public safety threat, totally blocking access to all non-Muslims to Temple Mount and Al-Aqsa. Jerusalem, Israel. 13th December 2011.

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Purim at The Kotel

Thousands celebrate Purim at the Western Wall. Jerusalem, Israel. 21/03/2011.

For more ‘click the pic’.

 

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Int’l Women’s Day

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Benny Gantz

New IDF Chief of Staff, Benny Gantz, Prays for Devine Support at The Kotel. Jerusalem, Israel. 14/02/2011.

More HERE

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Women Of The Wall Welcome Month of Shevat

 

And one used in The Telegraph:

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Even if it doesn’t help, it won’t hurt!

Hundreds gathered this afternoon, on the 22nd day of the Jewish month of Kislev in the year 5771, at the Wailing Wall for a mass prayer for rain, following a day of fast called upon by Chief Rabbis of Israel.

Services at the Kotel were lead by Rabbi Shlomo Moshe Amar, HaRishon LeTzion, Chief Rabbi of Sephardi Jews and President of The Great Rabbinical Court and silver horns were sounded. Yesterday, Rabbi Amar sent a plea to the worldwide Jewish community to join the fast and prayer, writing “We must gather and shout out to the Creator of the universe to have mercy and compassion on his people Israel, and His mercies are abundant.”

According to statistical data provided by the Israel Meteorological Service to date there has only been 5mm of rainfall on a nationwide average, which is only about 7% of the rainfall last year at this time and only 1% of the multi-year seasonal average.

In spite of the prayers forecasters are predicting at least another ten dry days.

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Tisha Be’Av – Mourning the Loss of The Temple

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

On the ninth day of the Jewish month of Av, Tisha Be’Av (Hebrew), Jews all over the world mourn the destruction of the two Holy Temples; the First Temple built by King Solomon was destroyed by Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar in 586 BCE and the Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE. Jews were dispersed and exiled all over the world for almost the next 2,000 years. Other tragic events are also tied to this date; God told the Children of Israel that the oldest generation would not enter the Land, the city of Betar was captured and thousands of Jews were killed in 135 CE, the Roman emperor built a pagan temple on the site of the Holy Temple and rebuilt Jerusalem as a pagan city in 136 CE, Jewish expulsion from Spain in 1492 began on Tisha Be’Av, World War I began and the beginning of the deportations from the Warsaw Ghetto to Treblinka death camp.

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be’Av is a day of fast, of prayer, of reflection, and of reading the Book of Lamentations. Thousands of Jews from all over Israel visit the last remnant of the Temple – The Western Wall (also called The Wailing Wall), exhibiting symbols of mourning; sitting on the ground or on low stools, not wearing leather shoes, not washing or bathing and refraining from any display of physical affection.

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha BeAv, Jerusalem, July 2009

Tisha Be'Av, Jerusalem, July 2009

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5769 years ago…

And God said: ‘Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth.’ And it was so. And God made the two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night; and the stars. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.

8-April-2009, Jerusalem – Thousands gathered at the Wailing Wall before dawn awaiting sunrise to recite: “Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the Universe who makes the works of Creation.”

The Blessing of the Sun, Birkat Hachamah in Hebrew, is recited in Judaism once in twenty-eight years, signifying the sun’s location at exactly that of the moment of its creation on a Wednesday morning, the fourth day of creation. The 28-year cycle was calculated in the Babylonian Talmud and it was renewed today. Adding to the excitement is the fact that today is the Eve of the Jewish holiday of Passover celebrating the exodus of the ancient Hebrews, led by Moses, from bondage in Egypt – a sun cycle began on the exact morning of exodus from Egypt somewhere between the years 1200-1500 BCE (exact date is disputed).

Much anticipation was evident among the worshippers, men, women and children assembled hours before the big moment. Then, just as the sun became visible to the east, climbing over the Wailing Wall which is the last remaining remnant of the Holy Temple, it triggered great excitement, prayer, dance and song among the crowd.

The Blessing of the Sun

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