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5,000 Gather on River Bank on Yom Kippur

The Thames River was the Jordan to 5,000 Jews who gathered on its banks for the Yom Kippur Tashlich prayer, says The London Daily Express.

The ceremony of offering this prayer on the banks of a body of water signifies, according to ancient Hebrew tradition, the washing away of the Jew’s sins.

The rite was originally performed on the banks of the Jordan River in Palestine.

“For the Jews in London,” says the Telegraph, “there was a shadowed wharf, cargo steamers, tugs and the old London River to take their sins to sea.

“Long bearded men who have been in the synagogue since seven o’clock in the morning, celebrating the New Year 5695, brought their Hebrew prayers to the Thames’ side.

“A tug hooted. The river traffic steamed by, and above the noises of the river rose the chant:

” ‘Who is a God like unto thee that pardoneth iniquity… passeth by the transgressions of the remnant of his heritage?’…”

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