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Thousands of notes from the site of the Nova music festival massacre on October 7th were placed in the Western Wall: “Our people know how to get up from the most difficult places.”

The Western Wall Heritage Foundation
In a moving ceremony that took place with the families of the Nova victims, about 15,000 notes were placed between the stones of the Kotel. Rabbi of the Western Wall: "The stones of the Western Wall saw the destruction of the people of Israel, and the same stones, also saw building and redemption."

Seven months have passed since the surprise attack by Hamas and the brutal massacre of the residents of the south, soldiers, and Nova party participants. The pain of the loss is palpable, and the memory of the murdered lives on. Today (Tuesday) an exciting ceremony took place in the Western Wall Plaza in which families of the Nova victims were united with the memory of their loved ones in the holy place.

During the ceremony, the families said chapters of Psalms and the prayer “Acheinu Kol Beit Yisrael,” a traditional Jewish prayer for the liberation of hostages. Prayers were also said for the protection of the IDF and security forces in their fight against terrorism and their efforts to return the abducted. A particularly moving moment was when the representatives of the families approached the special candle installation located in the back of the Western Wall Plaza. The candlestand was set up as a memorial place one month after the massacre, marking the conclusion of the shloshim, the first 30 days of mourning. It is available for all visitors to the Western Wall to light.

Over the last 7 months, there have been many prayer events at the Western Wall including families of the murdered and hostages in which tens of thousands have participated. A month ago, there was a very moving prayer service including the Shema Yisrael, the Hear O’ Israel prayer which was led by families of the hostages. The families of the hostages found this prayer particularly meaningful because it is a part of Jewish tradition that unites all the Jewish people, secular and religious.

During the last six months, the Western Wall Heritage Foundation has dedicated stands for collecting prayer notes all over the country. The booths were placed in central shopping malls, assembly areas for soldiers, rehabilitation departments in hospitals, and at the site of the Nova massacre.

The public’s response to the booths was overwhelming; over 15,000 notes were written to be placed in the Western Wall. Of these, about a third of the notes were collected from the Nova complex, after they were written by friends and family of the victims and hostages, as well as by Israelis and tourists who came to visit the place for identification and solidarity in memory of the murdered.

The collected notes were placed by the Rabbi of the Western Wall and the Holy Places, Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, between the stones of the Western Wall. Rabbi Rabinowitz offered a prayer for the speedy return of all the hostages, for the peace of the soldiers and the security forces, for the healing of the wounded, and in general for peace.

Rabbi Rabinowitz said, “Look at the stones above us. These ancient stones saw the destruction of the people of Israel 2,000 years ago. These same stones also saw building and redemption. They saw the exiles returning to the Land of Israel. They saw Jerusalem being rebuilt. These stones can tell you that you can get up from grief, you can create life out of loss. Our people know how to rise from the most difficult places. May you be comforted in the building of Jerusalem.”

The moving ceremony was a deep expression of the connection and hope of the families of the murdered and of the entire nation, which expresses its condolences and sends them strength and resilience.

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