Jewish Fighters on Land, on Sea, and in the Air Will Observe Rosh Hashonah Tonight
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Jewish Fighters on Land, on Sea, and in the Air Will Observe Rosh Hashonah Tonight

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Solemn prayers for a speedy victory and an early return to homes and families will be conducted tomorrow evening by 185 Army, Navy and Marine Chaplains of Jewish faith on American fighting fronts the world over as Jewish fighting men, often with the sound of battle still in their ears, usher in the Jewish New Year of 5704.

The National Jewish Welfare Board, with the cooperation of military authorities, has shipped prayer books and rams horns (shofars) to chaplains of all faiths who will supervise and conduct High Holy Day services for the tens of thousands of Jewish men and women in uniform. Among these shipments are 3,000 Orthodox Jewish prayer books sent to North Africa in response to a cabled request from General Eisenhower.

In the Mediterranean theatre of war, scores of religious services for Jewish fighting men will be held in ancient synagogues in Italy and North Africa, at points of rally behind fighting lines and in bivouac areas, according to arrangements recently completed at a conference of Jewish chaplains serving with the Allied Armies. The conference took place in Algiers and was attended by chaplains who came by plane and jeep from various fronts in the area. Included in the arrangements were provisions for American fighting men of Jewish faith to be the guests of liberated Jewish families in North Africa, Sicily and Italy during he Holy Day period.


The Jewish Hospitality Committee of Great Britain, recently organized by Walter Rothschild, chairman of the Army and Navy Committee of the Jewish Welfare Board, cabled today that “in over 100 communities facilities for hospitality attendant on High Holy Day services will be provided for American servicemen stationed in Britain.” The Balfour Services Club in London also wired that “on Rosh Hashonah we are entertaining several hundred of your sons and brothers.”

In the United States, over 500 local Jewish Welfare Board Army and Navy Service Committees have arranged for Jewish servicemen and women to be guests at homes in communities adjacent to military operations and colleges where men in uniform are in training. Civilian rabbis will serve as visiting chaplains at military establishments where no regular Jewish chaplains are on duty to conduct Rosh Hashons and Yom Kippur services. Hospital visiting committees, organized throughout the country by the Jewish Welfare Board Army and Navy Committee, will attend wounded servicemen as well as disabled veterans of the last war during the High Holy Days.

In a message to Jewish members of the armed forces, Frank L. Weil, president of the Jewish Welfare Board, said yesterday that “As the sound of the shofar heralds the coming of Rosh Hashonah, we face the year 5704 with new hope and with renewed confidence in the future. The tide of victory has definitely turned our way and the heroic exploits of our armed forces and of our great allies gives every indication of ultimate triumph over the totalitarian forces that, for a time, threatened to engulf us.”

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