More than 5,000 Christian pilgrims visiting Israel for Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot)

Sukkah roofs. The holiday will draw more than 5,000 Christian pilgrims to Israel. Credit: Yoninah via Wikimedia Commons.

 ( More than 5,000 Christian pilgrims from 100 countries will visit Israel this week as part of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem’s (ICEJ) Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) celebration.

The festival begins Sept. 20 at the Oasis Hotel in Ein Gedi on the Dead Sea and will continue for the reminder of Sukkot at Jerusalem’s International Convention Center. The weeklong celebration is expected to generate more than $16 million in revenue, and is the largest annual tourist event to Israel.

“We are thrilled that thousands of Christians from all over the world will be arriving in Jerusalem this week to take part in our annual Feast gathering, despite the recent tensions in the region over the Syrian conflict,” Dr. Jürgen Bühler, the ICEJ’s executive director, said in a statement. “Their visit to Jerusalem is a timely message of solidarity with the people of Israel.”

A number of prominent Christian leaders are expected to speak at the event, including Billy Wilson, Rene Terra Nova, Lance Lambert, Howard Flower, and Susan Hattingh. Several high-ranking Israel officials are also scheduled to speak.

Founded in 1980, the ICEJ is one of the largest pro-Israel Christian organizations in the world with branches in more than 140 countries. 

Posted on September 18, 2013 .