July 27th, 2008
12:54 PM ET
15 years ago

Rabbi: Removal of Obama's purported prayer note 'sacrilegious'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/27/art.obama.ap.jpg
caption="Sen. Barack Obama places a prayer note in Jerusalem's Western Wall."]

JERUSALEM (CNN) - The rabbi who supervises Jerusalem's Western Wall condemned the removal of a prayer note purportedly written by Sen. Barack Obama, saying the action was "sacrilegious."

The U.S. presidential candidate visited the holy site early Thursday and placed a note in the cracks of the wall - a custom of visitors.

It was subsequently removed from the wall, according to the Israeli newspaper, Ma'ariv, which printed what it said were the contents of the note.

Ma'ariv said a seminary student gave the note to the paper.

Obama's senior strategist Robert Gibbs told CNN, "We haven't confirmed nor denied" that the note is from the Illinois senator.

"This sacrilegious action deserves sharp condemnation and represents a desecration of the holy site," said Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, who supervises the Western Wall, in a statement.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (407 Responses)
  1. Jonathan, Hartford, CT

    What happens in Jerusalem doesn't stay there!

    July 27, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  2. Lisa

    Obama knew good in well that the note would get out. Everyone wanted to know what he was thinking and I doubt it thought it would never get out.

    July 27, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  3. James

    "Lord – Protect my family and me," reads the note.

    "Forgive me my sins, and help me guard against pride and despair. Give me the wisdom to do what is right and just. And make me an instrument of your will."


    July 27, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  4. Dems2008

    What was sacrilegious is that the media aired it!! Some things just should'nt be covered.

    July 27, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  5. Lisa

    If Obama thought the note would never get out, he's dumb and shouldn't be running to become the President.

    July 27, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  6. wendy lerner

    I can NOT believe someone would remove a note from the Holiest place on Earth before it's time– let alone read it!!! They wanted to read what he wrote because of who Sen. Obama was, so what's going to happen next? Banning him from the state of Israel because he's black?

    July 27, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  7. Aliou FL for Obama

    My only problem is with the had he has on. Why would he wear such a hat? Unless he is prepared to wear the turban, why would he wear a jewish symbol?

    I am always pissed off when jewish fanatics want anything their way. If Obama had worn a muslim symbol, it would have made headline news in this country. but the hat is not even mentioned.

    That is just unfair. Do we all have to convert to jewish and its satelite christian religions to satisfy the power greed of the jews?

    July 27, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  8. Raymond Duke

    Well it shouldn't had been removed but on the other hand you shouldn't be going to the wall and playing politics and using "GOD" as a political pawn.

    July 27, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  9. David

    I'm Jewish. To remove that paper offends me deeply. that Is sacrelige to the wall.

    July 27, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  10. R

    what has the world turned to? I can't believe someone would remove it, and CNN/media are even posting the picture of it. His prayers are nobody's business. Obama should have known with his popularity this could have happen. I wished he didn't do this

    CNN why are you posting the picture of his prayer?

    July 27, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  11. idumwonyi festus

    I challenege Americans today to make a choice between Esau (John Mc Cain) and Jacob (Barack Obama).

    July 27, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  12. Unshrub

    To Paula

    Since your comments are purely speculation and have nothing to do with facts; I will also speculate as to your motivation of your fabricatoin of the truth and claim you are just a McCain operative with the sole purpose of lying to make Obama look back.

    July 27, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  13. Who's house? Bama's house!

    Obama is GOD!!!!!!

    July 27, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  14. Josh

    John Boy,

    Read the news once in awhile instead of making silly comments. It's McCain who doesn't want to debate.

    July 27, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  15. Tom

    Hmm. We've now seen Obama dressed in full muslim garb, sitting in a racist anti-American church that he went to for 20 years, and now he is wearing a yamika at the western wall as if he were Jewish. The truth is considering the note, Obama probably had one of his own people remove it so that the contents would be all over the news. It fits his strategy thus far. Congratulations Obama, you've pandered to yet another group of people.

    July 27, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  16. S Callahan New York

    I thank the Rabbi for being a respector of those in faith with God.
    What many people don't understand is that this note is evidence of his 'relationship' to God, which is personal. May the Lord Guide and Bless him on his journey and know that if it is God's will for him to be this nations leader at this time coming, then nothing will stop it for God's grace and mercy will be leading the way.

    July 27, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  17. Maggie

    I am stiil watching CNN's Wolf Blitzer Late Edition and I thought I was suppose to be seeing John McCain in an interview. For the past 15 mins, all I have seen or heard are reports on Obama and his upcoming live appearance. Why say that CNN was having an hour interview ith McCain when all we are hearing is about Obama. The only interest seems to be Obama. Why not just have two hours of Obama as is happening. I am tired of the overexposure of Obama and I am sure there are alot of voters out there feeling the same way. This will definitely will turn the voters against him because we are fedup of this talk every day 24×7. CNN, Please give us a break and at least show the other side.

    July 27, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  18. Dems2008

    I am with you D Constantine. We all have something we are working on. I support Obama for Presdent of the United States...proudly and whole-heartedly! Not because I think he is a rock star or idealist, but because I sincerely believe he has this country's best interest in mind when he speaks!!

    July 27, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  19. Obama 08: mature, white woman

    When ios CNN going to cover the lies in the recent McCain ad re Obam's decision not to politicize the troops in Berlin.

    McCain was turned down for a visit in Pensacola, Florida in Aoril and they complied with the quote from his campaign: "We follow the rule." Also the shot of Obama was from the defense footage of him playing basketball with the troops in Kuwait. As Hagel just stated on "Face the Nation" the ad is totally inappropriate as would a visit by Obama have been.

    July 27, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  20. arkansan

    i'm not so sure that GOD needs our prayers on paper,anyway.this is why i don't go to church. my conversations with GOD are private.i dont need to pay someone else,to have a connection with GOD.established religions will be the death of this world,and i will not play a part in that silly game.why any group thinks that their definition of GOD is more real than another group's ,is dumb.

    July 27, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  21. A CANUCK

    To all who invaded Obama's privacy.....SHAME ON YOU.....and to those who perpetuate it......DOUBLE SHAME !!!!!!!!!

    July 27, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  22. Jeff, Huntington Beach, CA

    Profiting off anothers faith is the American way. This is how the Bush Administration roped in the "religious, misguided right" and just look at all those "blessed" televangelists. Faith, for the most part has become a monumental joke in this country. To take the hearfelt pleas of the first black presidential nominee for the safety of his family as well as himself when many "believers" are racist who would call it "God's will" if something were to happen to him is showing what a pathetic society we have become. The Obama haters ignorance continues to amaze me, but then they all supported Bush during his 8 year rein of terror.

    Read "The Political Brain" by Drew Weston if you want to be "enlightened" to what is going on in American polititcs today.

    July 27, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  23. idumwonyi festus

    Reading many of the rubbish comment by Americans on the presidential election, i just could not fathom that majority of them are so uncivilised, crude, and overtly dirty. I kept thinking that you only find this in Africa politics but my views have really changed. I challenege Americans of goodwill to make a choice between Esau (John Mc Cain) and Jacob (Barack Obama).

    July 27, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  24. Danette

    Not only is Obama's prayer one everyone says – the "protect my family" part as well as the "protect me from my own transgressions/weaknesses" part – we all include those elements. They are ingrained in us as prayer fodder from a young age in traditional churches.

    I love 'john boy's" comment above about Obama being an "empty suite" [sic] and McCain being a "real" American. Right. Let's compare, as a small thing – Senator Obama's ability to string together a sentence and inspire people – as opposed to the childish tantrum-like mannerisms of an old-timer, traditional thinker. Let's not even think about the legacy that his presidency would mean – W lite – where we have seen so little integrity and oh so much emptiness other than sheer and utter arrogance and selfish agenda.

    What is it that is so objectionable about Obama? I think we know and it's related to some of the ugliest biases we have in our country – race, background, money, etc. And these biases are either related to the candidate or the candidate's policies.

    July 27, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  25. Alex

    Jeff, I beg to differ but I believe that the most arogant man alive would be president Bush

    July 27, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
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