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Western Wall Rabbi: 'By the Power of Prayer, We Can Change Everything'

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JERUSALEM, Israel – As Israel approaches 100 days of war and captivity for the more than one hundred hostages, Israeli religious leaders called for a prayer gathering at the Western Wall to cry out to God – and Israelis responded.

As the shofars sounded, tens of thousands of Jews came to the revered Wall, including the families of those kidnapped, the injured, and soldiers. They came to plead to the Lord and invoke heavenly mercy upon all of Israel. It was the largest gathering at one of Judaism's holiest sites since the October 7th war began.

CBN News spoke with Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovich, the rabbi of the Western Wall, who led the time of prayer, along with other chief rabbis of Israel.

He told us, "We are Jews who believe that by the power of prayer, we can change everything. To do much better, to operate much better."

The rabbi added, "We are people who seek only good and therefore we stood here – tens of thousands of people – and we asked from God that He’ll heal the wounded, that He’ll return the hostages, that He’ll protect the soldiers that He’ll do good in the world – that He’ll bring peace to the world."

Rabbi Rabinovich said he was profoundly touched by seeing all the different parts of Israeli society, both religious and secular, coming together as one.

"We are a generation that needs to unite," he explained. "The seventh of October did something completely different. Until then, we had a year with lots of arguments. This year, since the seventh of October, we see differently. We see the people of Israel that it turns out – on the inside, are together – on the inside, they love one another."

slider img 2During the prayer, shofars and trumpets were sounded, special prayers were prayed for the well-being of the soldiers, the recovery of the wounded, and the return of the captives.

Representatives of the captives' families took part in reciting Psalms.

Adi, the sister of one of the abductees, Shlomi Ziv, said, "I’m feeling strong now. With all the people coming here to be with us, the hostages’ families. Always strong but it’s not so easy to be strong."

Shlomi was kidnapped while working at the Nova Music Festival. Hundreds of Israelis were murdered there, and dozens of others taken hostage.

"What (do) we have, without faith, hope, and unity – praying? Praying for God, praying everyone in Israel, for the people to come back home, for the health of the injured, for some good days. And I know they will come, those days. They are on the way," Adi stated.

Though it's not easy, she insists the people of Israel live, in Hebrew, Am Yisrael Chai.

"We know that the government will bring our brothers and sisters, all the hostages, brothers and sisters, home, and we are supporting the ministry and the IDF and all the forces to bring our families together again and the heart will be home again."

Israeli-American Eli Lipschitz says that while Israel is fighting back on a physical level, there is more to be done.

"There’s also a feeling that we need to connect on a spiritual level, to connect everybody together, to pray, to shout out, to scream – to tell everybody what’s going on, and to pray to God to help us bring back the hostages, and make sure that everyone who is in harm’s way will be safe," Lipschitz told us.

He believes there is an awakening as to what is going on and what Israel is fighting for.

Obviously, the horrific terror attack was an attack against Jews, it was against Jews everywhere," Lipschitz maintained. "It was against, specifically, Jews in Israel. It was against Jews around the world."

He welcomes the spiritual support of Christians.

"I’m sure the Christian Broadcasting Network and other places, there’s a lot of support for Israel. I think it’s important that your viewers see and understand and support that Israel is not alone. We’re fighting a fight that the world is going to be fighting. If it’s not going to be fought in Israel, it’s going to be fought everywhere else," Lipschitz claimed.

He continued, "It’s important that people gather around both praying to God and supporting Israel both physically and spiritually, because this is the right war, and this is a just war and something that we don’t have a choice but to win. We have no place else to go."

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About The Author

Julie Stahl
Julie
Stahl

Julie Stahl is a correspondent for CBN News in the Middle East. A Hebrew speaker, she has been covering news in Israel fulltime for more than 20 years. Julie’s life as a journalist has been intertwined with CBN – first as a graduate student in Journalism; then as a journalist with Middle East Television (METV) when it was owned by CBN from 1989-91; and now with the Middle East Bureau of CBN News in Jerusalem since 2009. As a correspondent for CBN News, Julie has covered Israel’s wars with Gaza, rocket attacks on Israeli communities, stories on the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and

About The Author

Chris
Mitchell