A month after Hamas’ murderous attack on Israel on October 7, 1,400 memorial candles were lit on Monday at the Western Wall marking 30 days since the victims and fallen soldiers who were killed in the attack and during the fighting against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
The ceremony took place in the presence of dozens of bereaved families, and was attended by Israel’s war cabinet member, Minister Benny Gantz.
The families were accompanied by hundreds from all over the country and from various sectors of Israeli society who came together to sing songs in memory of the victims and the fallen. As part of the ceremony, representatives of bereaved families who lost their loved ones read chapters of Psalms in memory of the victims.
The recitation of the Kaddish prayer in memory of the fallen and the victims was led by Brig. Gen. (res.) Dedi Simchi, former Fire Commissioner of the Israel Fire and Rescue Services, who lost his son Guy in the fighting.
Afterward, the Jewish prayer "El Male Rachamim" was recited by IDF Chief Cantor, Shai Abramson. Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovitch, the Rabbi of the Western Wall and the Holy Sites of Israel, said a prayer for the return of the Israeli captives and those still missing, and Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Leon recited a prayer for the well-being of IDF soldiers and security forces.
Rabbi Rabinovitch spoke words of encouragement to the bereaved families: "The 1,400 candles we light here are not only a memorial for each and every one of the victims of the Simchat Torah attack, but they are also for us to remember that these extinguished lights – will be lit by us once again.”
“This is our eternal mission, to light a candle from another candle, to bring light to the darkest places, and to believe that as long as the candle is burning, we can rebuild. These 1,400 candles will burn here in memory of lives that were and are no more. Every candle – a world unto itself. And when the days of war are over, we will take all of these candles and turn them into a great light – a new light," he added.