Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Fast Forward

The Jewish Agency will carry your High Holiday prayer to the Western Wall

The Jewish Agency for Israel is gathering prayers from Jews across the globe to place amid the stones of the Western Wall during the High Holiday season. Though COVID-19 has led to travel restrictions and limited access to the holy site, the Agency is helping worshippers keep the centuries-old tradition alive from the safety of their own homes.

“Between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the Western Wall and its plaza are normally packed with visitors,” said Agency chairman Isaac Herzog in a press release. “As an organization whose mission it is to strengthen global Jewry and its relationship with Israel, we thought it would be fitting to facilitate this important act for so many this high holiday season.”

A world-famous custom, global leaders and entertainers ranging from President Barack Obama and Pope John Paul II to Madonna have slipped notes into the cracks of the wall.

Prayers can be submitted online and an Agency representative will deliver them to the Western Wall. The program is too new to ascertain how many people will respond, a spokesman said.

The days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are known as the “10 Days of Repentance.” As Yom Kippur is a day of divine judgment, the time preceding it is dedicated to prayer and repentance, usually drawing thousands of Jews to the Western Wall.

The Western Wall, the last remaining wall of the Second Temple, is considered to be one of the holiest spots in Judaism and attracts huge crowds of worshippers and site-seers. Jews and non-Jews alike tuck more than a million notes into the rocks annually, hoping that their prayers and requests will be heard by God.

Engage

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.