With Israel in drought for the last five years – the worst in the land in the last 40 – thousands gathered at the Western Wall last week to pray for rain – and it happened, “big time,” as Donald Trump might say.
The idea began three weeks ago, when Israel’s chief rabbi, David Lau, solicited prayers from Jews and Christians around the world for an end to the nation’s drought.
The culmination came last Thursday when thousands responded to Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel’s call for a special prayer session at the Western Wall.
“I call on the public to participate in this event on the 10th of Tevet,” Ariel said when announcing the event, “and to bring umbrellas because together we will tear open the gates of Heaven.”
The prayers at the wall were led by Lau and Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef, along with other prominent rabbis.
Over the weekend, the rains came – raising the level of the Sea of Galilee, also known as Lake Kinneret, Israel’s main source of fresh water, one centimeter or .4 inches, bringing it to four and a half feet from the lower red line and 18 feet from the lake’s maximum capacity, according to a report in IsraelBreakingNews. The rains fell in Israel’s Golan Heights and Upper Galilee regions.
In addition, about six inches of snow gathered on Mount Hermon’s upper slopes, and three inches fell on the mountain’s lower slopes.
See average number of rainy days for Jerusalem, Israel, in graph below from WeatherAndClimate.com.