Sigd and Shabbat Shalom

Sigd and Shabbat Shalom

Sigd, a holiday which is set on

the 29th of Hebrew month of Heshvan,

 falls out on Shabbat this year.

A national holiday in Israel since 2008,

thousands of Ethiopian-Israelis celebrate

by coming to Jerusalem, Israel,

to the tayelet in Armon Hanetziv.

Ethiopian religious leaders in Jerusalem Israel Sigd

Kessim, religious elders, sit under umbrellas,

perhaps remembering the days in Ethiopia

when they went to the highest mountain to fast,

praying to one day return to Yerushalayim, to Zion.

Woman praying at Sigd event in Jerusalem Israel

Women can be seen praying,

and perhaps remembering life in Ethiopia,

and their arduous journey to Sudan and challenges in Israel.

Each year,

Young male IDF soldiers in uniform for Sigd in Jerusalem Israel on Tayelet

more and more of the young people

Young female IDF soldiers on Tayelet for Sigd celebration

 young women as well as men,

are serving in the Israeli Defense Forces.

Sigd was observed on Thursday this year,

so as not to have the celebrations interfere with Shabbat.

The reason the main celebration is on the tayelet

Shabbat Shalom from the Tayelet view of Old City Temple Mount

 is that its elevation provides this, one of the best views

of the Old City and the Temple Mount.

שבת שלום

Jerusalem: Looking Back and Forward

Jerusalem: Looking Back and Forward

Jerusalem, Israel:

the autumn clouds are white,

and look like puffs of cotton in the blue sky.

Jerusalem, Israel blue sky, white clouds over the Western Wall in Old City Jerusalem Israel

It’s after the busy fall holiday season,

and the record crowds of visitors have returned home.

On a weekday afternoon,

Lone man praying in afternoon at Kossel Yerushalayim

it is possible to find a time at

 the Kotel, Western Wall, to pray in solitude.

This is in contrast to the main lightrail route,

along Jaffa Road.

At the start people complained.

Rechov Jafo in Yerushalayim people waiting for light rail

Who remembers the Saga of Light Rail?

Today crowds can be found along the route day and night.

Remember when George Mitchell was going to

work out a peace deal in the Middle East?

It did not go as Mitchell planned.

However, remember when the

Nature Museum was to be closed?

work and music in garden museum in Jerusalem Israel

Well, the protesters prevailed over the developers,

and today new signs tell of new projects

that are happening on those Jerusalem grounds.

children in fountain

In Jerusalem new parks have been developed

and old playgrounds are being leveled and upgraded.

Looking back just a few years

we can see and feel the difference,

but there are too many examples to list now.

This week I was on the helicopter landing pad

at Hadassah Hospital in Ein Kerem,

to take photos – not as a patient – thanks.

You will hear about their plans soon,

View of Jerusalem Israel from top of helicopter landing at Hadassah Ein Kerem

but what a view there is from up there.

As we commented on all the new building going on,

Cab driver asked to take his picture

my taxi driver on the way home wanted me to take his photo.

All around there are new Jerusalem roads

 which are too often overloaded with traffic.

Wait until the next holiday season,

the suffganiot have been out for weeks,

Suffganiot in window of bakery in Jerusalem

and soon it will be Hanukkah.

With all the centennial events,

yet another big one is ahead.

Allenby 100 years entering Jerusalem

General Allenby made his way into the Old City

of Jerusalem on foot on December 11, 1917,

one hundred years ago.

It was also Hanukkah then,

but I would bet the window displays were not filled

with suffganiot weeks before the holiday.

Oh, Yerushalayim, 

Jerusalem looking back and to the future.

100 Years – Israel Going & Growing

100 Years – Israel Going & Growing

From Jerusalem, Australia, and New Zealand,

government leaders traveled to Beer Sheva

for the 100th-year reenactment of the charge

of the Light Horse Brigade,

Australian soldiers in Beer Sheva 100 years

when those brave Aussie horsemen defeated the Turks

and turned the tide in World War I for the Allies.

Then Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

went to London for the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration,

which called for a Jewish Homeland to be established in Palestine.

For those who study the Bible,

these two events 100 years ago were of great significance.

Christian Zionists were in Jerusalem, Israel,

this week to commemorate with Israelis.

Meanwhile,

outside the PM’s official residence in Jerusalem, Israel,

there was a protest tent and hunger strike.

Protest outside of Prime Minister's house in Jerusalem

Leaders from Judea and Samaria want

more services and better roads as promised.

Special programs around 100 years since Balfour

Israel Knesset building flags, no people

have been held at the Knesset.

Finally back in session after long break,

the Knesset is the scene of multiple sessions daily.

MK Avraham Neguise

One committee headed by MK Avraham Neguise

heard testimonies of recent growing antisemitism.

From left to right, wearing translation earphones, are

Knesset committee on antisemitism German, Austria and EU speak

the Ambassadors of Germany, the European Union, and Austria.

Also on the road this week is

President Reuven Rivlin, who was in Spain

meeting with Jewish leaders, and was hosted

by King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia at a state dinner.

100 years ago Jews were allowed to enter Spain

after being expelled in 1492.

Last week at Beit Hanasi, the President’s official residence,

New security at Beit Hanasi Jerusalem

new security covers were down.

Protesters from South Tel Aviv outside Beit Hanasi for Supreme Court new President

Loud protesters from South Tel Aviv

took to the streets shouting,

in stark contrast to what was happening inside.

Outgoing Israeli Supreme Court President Miriam Naor

Two female Israeli Supreme Court Presidents kiss at Beit Hanasi ceremony

kissed and hugged incoming President Esther Hayut.

Israel Supreme Court Judges at Beit Hanasi

Israeli Supreme Court Judges sat on the side

Front row dignitaries at Supreme Court swearing in ceremony new President

as former Supreme Court Presidents sat with

with other government leaders.

After the loud Knesset opening,

Mew Israeli Supreme Court President

this dignified, hand shaking,

Herzog and Hayut kiss at Beit Hanasi ceremony

kissing and hugging event did not make international news,

but Israel media had live coverage.

The room was as crowded as it was for President Trump’s visit.

Israeli head of police at Beit Hanasi

The Israeli Chief of Police did not seem

thrilled while he waited for the official photos of

Official pose of new and former Israel Supreme Court Presidents with President Rivlin and Justice Minister Shaked

the present and past Supreme Court Presidents

with President Rivlin and Justice Minister Shaked.

close up of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

But even the Prime Minister had to sit and wait

Official photo full court from new Israeli Supreme Court ceremony

for the expanded official Supreme Court photo.

One more of the many memorable scenes at Beit Hanasi

Salim Joubran at Beit Hanasi as he retires from Israel Supreme Court

was that of recently retired Supreme Court Judge Salim Joubran,

who was interviewed after the ceremony for Israeli TV.

He was the Arab Judge who oversaw the last Israeli election.

Who would have imagined any of these things 100 years ago?

Palestine was a barren desert under Ottoman rule.

Today as we still await the rainy season,

the only umbrella I saw out this week

Umbrella rain statute in Jerusalem Mamilla Mall

was on this art piece in Mamilla Mall.

And as always it seems,

Jerusalem Israel cultural festival

 there is another new cultural festival ahead.

Who could have imagined any of this 100 years ago?

Who could have imagined it 70 years ago?

A short video, part of German Ambassador’s testimony in Knesset:

 More on legislation here,

but this is getting way too long, as always.

The three millionth tourist for 2017,

entered Israel, receiving a royal welcome,

they will certainly see for themselves,

what is happening on the Jerusalem, Israel streets.