Preached in City Pulpits

Rabbi, Louis I. Newman, Temple Rodeph Sholom, 7 West Eighty-third street:

"Baron Edmond Rothschild, who died two weeks ago, is remembered throughout the world not so much because he was a financier, an artlover, a sportsman, or even a philanthropist, but because he established the agricultural colonies in Palestine in 1881 after the Russian pogroms. These colonies were a preparation for the great enterprise of national restoration inaugurated by Theodore Herzl in 1897. It is an irony of history that Baron Edmond and his brothers together with the ‘midget millionaires’ of Israel stood aloof from Herzl’s work, thereby forcing him to take his message to the common people and the middle classes of Jewry.

"It is to the credit of Baron Edmond that he came to appreciate the vision of Herzl, even though his enlistment occurred too late for Herzl to know of it, and that the Baron became honorary president of the Jewish Agency for Palestine. The conversion of the Baron to Zionism holds many lessons for those Westernized Jews who have held aloof from the work of Palestinian reconstruction. Moreover, the fact that the Baron is remembered best as the ‘benefactor of the Jewish people’ ought be an inspiration for the powerful and well-to-do leaders of Israel to emulate his example."

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