update deskJewish & Israeli Holidays

Ben-Gvir visits Temple Mount during priestly blessing ceremony

Tens of thousands of Jewish worshippers participated in the semi-annual Birkat Kohanim at the Western Wall.

Jewish worshippers pray in front of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City, during the Cohen Benediction priestly blessing at the Jewish holiday of Passover which commemorates the Israelites' hasty departure from Egypt. April 25, 2024. Photo by Chaim Goldbergl/Flash90.
Jewish worshippers pray in front of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City, during the Cohen Benediction priestly blessing at the Jewish holiday of Passover which commemorates the Israelites' hasty departure from Egypt. April 25, 2024. Photo by Chaim Goldbergl/Flash90.

Israel’s National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir visited the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Thursday during the priestly blessing to mark the Passover holiday.

The semi-annual ceremony, which also takes place during Sukkot, is known in Hebrew as “Birkat Kohanim.” It is held on the intermediate days of the two Jewish festivals and draws tens of thousands of worshippers to the Western Wall, and increasingly in recent years to the Temple Mount itself.

Sephardic Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef blessed Ben-Gvir’s son at the Western Wall.

This year, a prayer was to be held for the return of the hostages held by Hamas in Gaza, for the safety of Israel Defense Forces soldiers and security forces and for the peace of the people of Israel.

There was heavy police presence at the entrances to the Old City and Western Wall, due to heightened tensions amid Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza.

The ceremony was led by the chief rabbis of Israel and the rabbi of the Western Wall and the holy sites.

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