Jewish Journal

Obama's note at the Western Wall asks for God's guidance [VIDEO]

Wall rabbi condemns note's publication

July 25, 2008 | 3:20 pm

The Western Wall rabbi has condemned an Israeli newspaper for publishing a note Barack Obama left in the Wall.

Sen. Obama (D-Ill.), the presumptive Democratic nominee, visited Israel this week, and before leaving early Thursday morning, prayed at the Wall, the largest remnant of the Second Temple and the holiest site in Judaism.

A yeshiva student pulled the note, handwritten on King David Hotel stationery, out of the Wall, and Ma’ariv published it:

“Lord, Protect my family and me. Forgive me my sins and help me guard against pride and despair. Give me the wisdom to do what is right and just. And make me an instrument of your will.”

The decision by Maariv to make the note public on Friday drew fire. The rabbi in charge of the Western Wall, Shmuel Rabinovitz, said publishing the note intruded in Obama’s relationship with God.

“The notes placed between the stones of the Western Wall are between a person and his maker. It is forbidden to read them or make any use of them,” he told Army Radio.

The publication “damages the Western Wall and damages the personal, deep part of every one of us that we keep to ourselves,” he said.

Obama at the Kotel—Video from AP

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