Oct 23, 2021

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As is done every year on Sukkot (Festival of Booths), the priestly blessing took place on Wednesday at the Western Wall adjacent to the Temple Mount.

The turnout this year was significantly lower than in years past due to covid restrictions. However, that didn’t stop several hundred cohanim from filling the Western Wall Plaza to perform the ritual blessing. Thousands were in attendance to receive the blessing that used to be performed by the High Priests in the time of the first and second Temples.

The blessing is performed by kohanim, male Jews with priestly heritage who have a clear patrilineal tradition leading back to Aaron the high priest, brother of Moses. The lineage is rigorously protected, and its integrity has been proven in recent years as scientists have discovered a genetic factor common to most kohanim.