British Jews Hail Congregants of Oldest Synagogue in Europe

Sephardic Jews of the synagogue of Bevis Marks, London, oldest Jewish house of worship on British soil, in a resolution congratulated their Ashkenazie brethren in Worms, for preserving the oldest synagogue on the European continent, and a house of study and prayer associated with the name of Rashi and other lights of the Diaspora, for 900 years.

The Board of Elders of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ congregation of London further added in the resolution that, recalling the vicissitudes through which the Jewish people have passed during the nine centuries of the existence of the synagogue at Worms, pray that God may vouchsafe enlargement, deliverance and peace to the Jewish community at Worms and the whole of Israel.

A copy of the resolution, signed by Sir Francis A. Montefiore, president of the board, will be forwarded to the president of the Jewish community at Worms.

Arthur de Casseres, presiding warden, declared “that the board felt that, not only in view of the present circumstances in Germany but having regard to the position of the Jewish people in Europe in general, that it is a matter of the greatest importance to realize that there is standing today in Germany a Jewish sanctuary in which, for close upon a millenium, Jews have continued to study and pray.

“The members of this congregation, whose ancestry dates in some cases back to the days of Oliver Cromwell, cannot but be deeply moved by the vicissitudes of those Jews who for the last 900 years have upheld the Jewish faith in the historic city of Worms, and it is our most earnest hope that our German coreligionists may soon enjoy all those blessings of liberty of conscience and civil and political freedom which we possess in this country of ours.”

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