Thousands of Jews gather at Wailing Wall for Passover blessing

Jerusalem, Mar 29 (efe-epa).- Thousands of Jewish people on Monday went to the Wailing Wall, the most sacred site in Judaism, in Old Jerusalem for the Priestly Blessing ceremony of Passover, the country’s first major religious event that was attended by large crowds since the start of the pandemic.

Last year, a symbolic number of just 10 people took part in the ceremony due to the Covid-19.

Following the Jewish tradition, clergymen named Cohen – priests, male descendants of the biblical Aaron, Moses’ brother – blessed worshippers in the so-called “Blessing of the Kohanim”.

The ritual, a modern substitute for sacrifices in the ancient temple, is held twice a year, during Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot).

Worshipers must respect social distancing during this year’s ritual, which will be extended to two days instead of just one to accommodate the crowds.

Over the weekend, Jews marked the beginning of the Passover with their first traditional family dinners in almost a year.

Last year’s celebrations of Passover were held amid a strict lockdown, with families banned from getting together to commemorate the exodus of the Jews from Egypt.

Israel’s advanced anti-Covid vaccination rollout has allowed the country to get back to a degree of normality, including in Jerusalem’s Old City. EFE-EPA


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