Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90
Tens of thousands gathered at the kotel to pray for Rav Ovadia, September 29, 2013.

Tens of thousands of Jews arrived Sunday night at the Kotel plaza for a large prayer assembly and to say Tehilim-Psalms for the quick recovery of former chief rabbi, renowned posek-halachic scholar, and spiritual leader of Shas Rav Ovadia Yosef.

Among the assembled was the chief Sephardi rabbi, Rav Shlomo Amar, who said Tehilim a very long time.

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Meanwhile, Rav Ovadia’s condition, which continues to be critical, is showing some improvement, say his family members. Hospitalized at the Hadassah-Ein Kerem Medical Center, Rav Ovadia woke up for a short time and responded to the voices of his relatives by waving his arm. He coughed a little and was unable to speak because of the tracheostomy tube in his mouth.

The doctors are encouraged by these signs of consciousness, after Rav Ovadia’s many days of induced coma that was intended to stabilize his breathing and heart rate.

Rav Ovadia’s daughter Adina Bar Shalom told Kol barama Radio that her father had opened his eyes and shaken her hand.

“He shook my hand and his pupils moved,” Bar Shalom recalled.

She related: “We go every day. All of us. All the brothers and sisters. We want to see him as soon as he wakes up. We won’t miss a moment.”

She said in general his condition is improving slowly, and what’s required now is patience and prayer. “We must tell God that we still need him,” she said.

If you wish to mention him in your prayers, his name is Harav Chaim Ovadia Yosef ben Gorgia.

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