Rucheli's Writings

Readings, Ramblings, and Religious Rantings

Kohanim at the Kotel September 26, 2010

Filed under: My Blog — rucheli @ 1:24 pm
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We interrupt your normally scheduled programming (i.e. posts catching up on the last week) to bring you footage of the Birkat Kohanim at the Kotel from this morning.

Birkat Kohanim is a special priestly blessing that is given to the people by the Kohanim (descendants of the priestly line from King David and King Solomon) during major festivals. Twice a year, once during Sukkot and once during Pesach, thousands of Kohanim gather in front of the Kotel in Old City Jerusalem to bless the entire Jewish people.

What was absolutely incredible is that thousands and thousands of Jews from all walks of life were there for the blessing. From secular to Haredi, Ethiopian to converts, soldiers to the Chief Rabbis of Israel, all of us gathered together and davened the same service at the same time in the same place. This is very unusual for the Kotel, because usually hundreds of minyans are having separate services at the Kotel because everyone is scattered and from different backgrounds. But today we were able to use the loudspeakers since we are in the intermediary days of the holiday, and it echoed across all of Jerusalem. It was an incredibly moving experience, because no other time in the world we know today do so many Jews gather for the same holy reason. It’s by far the closest we can get to serving Hashem the way we used to in the times of the Temple, at least until Moshiach comes (bimherah beyamenu)!

Here’s a video courtesy of Yeshiva World News. Enjoy 🙂

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"Got Shabbat?" – Chabad brings light to Lake Mary February 24, 2010

Rabbi Yanky Majesky and his wife Chanshy from the Chabad of North OrlandoIt may have seemed like a normal Friday night in North Orlando, but something special was going on in the Courtyard Marriott of Lake Mary. As Rabbi Yanky Majesky and the men of the growing Chabad of North Orlando congregation joined in the harmonies of L’cha Dodi, his wife Chanshy led the women of the group in lighting candles to welcome Shabbat. The couple, along with their 8 month old baby girl, moved to Lake Mary a few months ago to start a congregation where every single Jew feels welcomed. Talking to the members of Lake Mary’s newest congregation, it’s evident that was exactly the sentiment that surrounded the congregation’s second monthly “Got Shabbat?” service on February 12th.

All throughout the program, Rabbi Majesky made congregation members feel at home no matter their background or upbringing. By including both traditional hymns and more modern melodies, mixed with the occasional insightful explanation of various prayers, the service held by Rabbi and Mrs. Majesky was a breeze for everyone to follow along. “We attend services with Rabbi Majesky because it’s light and enjoyable for our family… not only that, but we feel personally welcomed,” said one member of the Rosen family, regulars at the new congregation. While those in attendance were from a variety of previous affiliations, from Reform to Orthodox and everything in between, everyone agreed that at the Chabad of North Orlando they got the best of both worlds, immersing themselves in a traditional atmosphere while at the same time enjoying a completely non-judgmental and inviting environment.

Steve Cohen, who co-sponsored the event in honor of his parents David and Adele Cohen, couldn’t be happier with …

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