At least 20,000 Jews from all across Israel, and some coming in from around the world, converged on the biblical city of Hebron this shabbat to honor the memory of the Matriarch Sarah, whose burial in the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron – Maarat HaMachpela – was chronicled in this week’s Torah portion.
Considered the first piece of land purchased by the Patriarch Abraham in the land of Israel, Sarah’s burial place later became the final resting place of her son Isaac and his wife Rivka, and her grandson Jacob and his wife Leah. Jewish tradition teaches that the Tomb of the Patriarchs is also the burial place of Adam and Chava (Eve), and even Moshe and Tzipporah. It is also believed to be situated at the entrance to the Garden of Eden.
Despite threats of inclement weather, today’s descendants of Sarah arrived en masse in Hebron and Kiryat Arba, and were hosted by local residents. They also participated in tours, two political panels, open houses, and the dedication of a community hall. Videos from the events can be viewed at www.hebronvideo.com.