Rachel weeps again
3rd candle of Hanukkah
The time is 12:00 – midnight in Israel. I am sitting here with tears in my eyes.
Rachel is weeping again.
For the last 14 years, everytime I’ve travelled to Jerusalem, I’ve passed by Kever Rachel, the tomb
of our Matriarch, beloved wife of Ya’akov – Rachel. No more. Beit Lechem is off-limits. Kever
Rachel, Beit Lechem, are being turned over to foreigners by the Israeli government, by and of their own free
Thus says the L-rd: A voice was heard in Rama, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for
her children; she refused to be comforted for her children, because they are not. Thus says the
L-rd: Keep the voice from weeping, and thy eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded says the
L-rd; and they shall come back again from the land of the enemy. And there is hope for thy future
says the L-rd, and thy children shall come back again to their own border.
V’shavu banim l’gvulum.
When we came back to Beit Lechem in 1967 soldiers fighting in the area reported hearing sounds of a
woman wailing. The sounds were investigated – nothing was ever found. Rachel, wailing for her children.
Why should she have cried then – for we were returning, as the Biblical prophecy so clearly states.
Perhaps she knew then what we know only today – we returned, only to leave again.
If that be the case, however, then the prophecy is yet to be fulfilled, and it will be fulfilled
…And there is hope for the future…thy children shall come back again to their own border…
Yet tonight, with the city of Beit Lechem cut off from the State of Israel, … Beit Lechem, birthplace
of David, King of Israel, with Rachel’s tomb in the hands of foreign terrorists, with our busses
having to use roundabout roads, so as to bypass one of the most important cities in the Land of
Israel, because it is off-limits
tonight, the People of Israel weep, the Land of Israel weeps, the Torah weeps,