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In a German city with 30 Jews, a restored Art Deco synagogue houses pagan efforts

(((JTA) — For years after World War II, Germany’s once magnificent Görlitz synagogue housed a family of goats and pigs. The roof of the Art Deco style building had collapsed. The government is approaching the destruction of the entire structure.

But this week, the only synagogue in Saxony that survived the 1938 Kristallnacht pogrom was re-dedicated as a place of worship and a space for pagan gatherings after nearly 30 years of renovation and restoration. ..

Soon the Cultural Forum Synagogue Gerlitz, which houses both Jewish religious service and pagan cultural events, was revealed at a streaming ceremony on Monday at several postponed events due to the coronavirus pandemic. It was. Performed by Norwegian Jewish vocalist Bente Kahan, spoken by local and national politicians, rabbis and other senior officials.

Although the synagogue could not be completely restored, the restoration, which was completed in stages over the years, was “lovingly done,” said Alex, Canter and Chairman of the town’s Jewish community.・ Mr. Jacobowitz said. For example, the tablets of the Ten Commandments Sanctuary have not been restored, and there are no Stars of David on the outer walls of the building. Also, there is no word from the book of Exodus that once decorated the entrance. You may live between them. “

However, a small Jewish community of less than 30 and its supporters raised about 70,000 euros (about $ 83,000) to cover the cost of exchanging the giant Jewish star that once stood in the cupola of the building. .. 55,000 near the Polish border.

Architects William Rossou and Hans Max Kune designed the synagogue. When the synagogue first opened in March 1911, it had space for the entire community of about 600 Jews. agency.He recently published A book about the synagogue.

At Kristallnacht Pogrom in November 1938, the Nazis set the building on fire, but the local fire department put it out. A few years later, many Jews in the community were deported and killed on the Holocaust.

After the war, the building in the former East Germany was devastated. For some time it was used to store theater props and also housed local families and their livestock. The city purchased the synagogue from the rest of the Dresden Jewish community in 1963, and then officially purchased it from the Jewish Material Claims Conference on Germany in 1990 after national unification.

A group of local citizens supported the restoration. Ultimately, the cost of about 12.6 million euros (about $ 15 million) was borne by the federal and state governments, as well as private foundations and individuals. The first modification was the 1990 roof.

As a finishing touch, the new star will be placed in the dome later this year, Jacobowitz said.

“After decades, the Jewish community in Görlitz has finally regained a place of prayer and suspension,” the Rabbinic Jewish Council of the German Orthodox Church said in a statement Monday. “We hope that the Görlitz synagogue will be a place of interaction and encounter for all citizens on this and the other side of the Neisse River to learn more about each other and from each other and to break prejudice. “

In a gesture summarizing years of pagan efforts, the son of a Protestant minister who worked in the city said, “I’m finding a new home now,” in the town where he grew up, putting his Steinway piano into space. I donated.

Among the people who spoke at the event on Monday was Mayor Görlitz Octavian Urus. Michael Kretschmer, Prime Minister of Saxony. Rabbi Akiva Weingarten in Dresden.

“I always thought it was important for the synagogue to continue to leave scars, to show that the Jewish story of Goerlitz would not be destroyed by a political emergency,” Jakovowitz told the Jewish Telegraph Department.

In a German city with 30 Jews, a restored Art Deco synagogue houses pagan efforts

Source link In a German city with 30 Jews, a restored Art Deco synagogue houses pagan efforts

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