In the midst of the summer vacation in schools, the administration of the Education Ministry led by Education Minister Naftali Bennet and Director-General of the Education Ministry Mr. Shmuel Abuav met at the Western Wall last week to mark fifty years since the reunification of Jerusalem and to plan for the next school year.
The administrators visited new excavation sites at the Western Wall and in the Western Wall Tunnels, guided by the Director of the Western Wall, Mordechai (Suli) Eliav. After this, they heard a fascinating lecture given by paratrooper Yoram Zamush who surveyed the series of events from fifty years ago. The administration gathered in the Beyond Our Wall hall in the Tunnels for a discussion on preparations for the upcoming school year.
In addressing the group, the Rabbi of the Western Wall, Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, said that the Western Wall, and Jerusalem in general, are perhaps the deepest and most essential components in our identity as Jews. We all came from Jerusalem and returned to Jerusalem. We all mourned for Jerusalem and prayed for Jerusalem. Jerusalem is in our genetic code. It is north in our spiritual compass. Jerusalem is everything. To come to Jerusalem means to return to ourselves, to hear what this eternal city has to say to us, in this moment in time. The Rabbi congratulated the Ministry of Education for its cooperation with the Western Wall Heritage Foundation in working to make the Western Wall accessible to the entire Jewish nation through various programs in schools, for bar mitzvahs, and many other initiatives meant to connect the younger generation with its past and with our peoples eternal chain of generations.
Education Minister Naftali Bennet told the story of his parents aliya to Israel following the Six Day War and spoke of the Education Ministrys obligation to place Jerusalem at the center of its educational endeavors.