After Long Covid Delay, Lion of Judah Dedicated in Jerusalem
A delegation of Jewish and Christian leaders gathered in Jerusalem’s Bloomfield Park on Wednesday for the long awaited dedication of the “Lion of Judah” sculpture, intended as a public display of solidarity between the two communities. The sculpture, designed and created by American artist Max Greiner Jr. was commissioned in 2018 and completed in 2020, but was delayed in its installation and dedication because of covid.
Rabbi Pesach Wolicki, Director of Ohr Torah Stone’s Center for Jewish-Christian Understanding and Cooperation (CJCUC) and a prominent activist in the world of Jewish-Christian affairs was responsible for moving the project forward together with Jerusalem’s Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan Nahoum.
“The growing positive relationship between Christians and Jews is one of the most miraculous developments of recent history. This Lion of Judah sculpture marks this miracle for posterity. For decades and centuries to come, visitors to Jerusalem will come to this place, read the inscription, and will be reminded that as the State of Israel flourished in our time, American Christians stood with us, shoulder to shoulder, in love and friendship,” Rabbi Wolicki explained.
The lion, cast out of bronze, was designed to convey ideals of both power and compassion which the artist said reflect the spirit of the modern state of Israel.
“We are honored to have been given such a beautiful gift which symbolizes the friendship between Israel and the evangelical community,” said Hassan Nahoum. “The lion of Judah is the symbol of Jerusalem and we could not have found a better place for it looking into the walls of the old city. I am grateful to Max Greiner the artist and to Michelle Bachman who came to me with this wonderful gesture.”
Rabbi Dr. Kenneth Brander, President of Ohr Torah Stone said “Through the lasting symbol represented by this lion sculpture we are reminded of the history and eternal presence of the Jewish people in our homeland and in particular in the united city of Jerusalem, our eternal capital. While many partners have enabled us to return to this land and city and to rebuild it into the technological, spiritual and cultural powerhouse it is today, we are continuously strengthened by the friendship and generosity extended by our Christian brothers and sisters from all over North America.”
The dedication coincided with the Jerusalem Prayer Breakfast mission in Israel and included addresses by Deputy Mayor Hassan Nahoum, Former UN Ambassador Danny Danon, Member of Knesset Robert Ilatov, Australian American Christian evangelist and motivational speaker Nick Vujicic, Debby Meszaros representing of the Lion of Judah donors, former congresswoman Michele Bachmann and Pastor Michael Obi of Mount Zion Prayer Center.