A Guide to Israel
and its Holy sites
our mother, died as she was giving
birth to her second son Binyamin. Before dying, she
named him Ben Oni; the child of my pain. His father however called him
She died as Yaakov entered Eretz Yisroel and was buried in
which is about four miles southwest of Yerushalayim.
medrash says that Hashem commanded Yaakov to bury her here so
that the Jews would be able to pass her kever place on their way into
exile and pray for their
redemption. On account of her great deed of not allowing her sister to be embarrassed in
public, Hashem would hasten the final redemption.
The original structure around her kever was built by Sir Moses
Montefiore in 1841. After the war in '48, the Arabs refused to allow the Jews to pray at
this holy site. It was only after the Six Day War in '67, with the west bank recaptured,
that Jews could enter it freely once again. Thousands of people continue to stream to this
holy place in order to beseech Hashem to fulfill their prayers in the great
z'chus of our
great mother Rochel. Praying here fills one with great awe and trepidation.
Nowadays, large cement barriers have been set up in front of the building in order to
protect it from Arab terrorists. It's a sad reminder of the golus we are still in.
In 1998 the entire kever was reconstructed and enlarged and now looks