Photo: Israeli soldiers operating in Gaza. Credit: IDF

IDF troops held a mezuzah-hanging ceremony in Gaza City, Israel National News reported on Monday.

Givati Infantry Brigade Rabbi Daniel Kind led the ceremony, which was attended by soldiers and commanders in the Strip as part of the mission to defeat Hamas after the Oct. 7 massacre.

“I wish the entire brigade to continue in our special work, in the great mission. God willing, we will succeed,” Kind was quoted as saying.

In Jewish tradition, a mezuzah (“doorpost” in Hebrew) is a piece of parchment inscribed with verses from the Torah held in a case that is attached to the right doorframe of the entrance to the home and in all of the rooms of the residence.

Due to uncertainty concerning the Gaza City ceremony under Jewish law (halachah), the rabbi recited a verse from Psalms instead of the regular blessing: “Blessed are You, O Lord; train me in Your laws.”

Rabbi Yoel Rechel, who was expelled from Gush Katif during the 2005 disengagement from the Gaza Strip, posted a video to Facebook on Nov. 16 of another mezuzah-blessing ceremony after IDF troops took over Al-Azhar University in Gaza City, which the rabbi renamed to the Hebrew Elazar.

Israeli soldiers prayed at a sixth-century synagogue in Gaza earlier this month.

Michael Freund, founder and chairman of Shavei Israel, tweeted that “for the first time in decades, Israeli soldiers prayed in the ancient synagogue in Gaza which was built in the 6th century and where a beautiful mosaic floor depicting King David was unearthed years ago. Jews have returned to Gaza!!”

(JNS)