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August 26, 2013 9:04 am

Thousands of Western Wall Prayer Notes Removed Ahead of Jewish New Year Celebrations

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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A volunteer from The Western Wall Foundation Council removes the notes from crevices in the wall ahead of the Jewish New Year. Photo: Screenshot / Channel 2.

A volunteer from The Western Wall Foundation Council removes the notes from crevices in the wall ahead of the Jewish New Year. Photo: Screenshot / Channel 2.

Thousands of prayer notes were removed Sunday from the Western Wall, in Jerusalem, ahead of Jewish New Year celebrations beginning next week, Israel’s Channel 2 reported.

The Western Wall Foundation Council, led by Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovitch, twice a year removes the notes from crevices in the wall that surrounded the ancient Jewish temple’s courtyard, before Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, and Passover, in the Spring.

A volunteer team uses thin sticks to extract the notes, which are then buried on the nearby Mount of Olives.

The old custom of leaving personal prayers or notes wishing for world peace is held by Jews and embraced by many non-Jewish visitors to Jerusalem, including FC Barcelona soccer player Lionel Messi, who led his teammates to leave hand written notes in the wall during a goodwill visit to Israel this month.

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