New York (Mar. 27)
America’s fourth war-time passover will be observed beginning tomorrow evening in German towns which have not heard the sound of Jewish prayers in over a decade, on volcanic Pacific islands that never saw a Jew until last month and in thousands of homes where an empty chair at the seder table will serve as a proxy for a fighting man or woman engaged in more pressing business in Europe or Asia.
So that American servicemen and women may be assured of participating in traditional Passever observance if they so desire, the National Jewish Welfare Board has sent 350,000 boxes of matzohs, 5,000 gallons of sacramental wine and 115,000 Haggadahs to virtually every corner of the world. Jewish chaplains who landed on Two Jima with the Marines carried with them ritual supplies and Passover food. In Germany, Jewish chaplains have already made all arrangements for the seders, as have chaplains in France, Belgium and Holland. Religious soldiers have been sent kosher food packages by teh Agudas Israel Youth Council of America. These went to overseas posts and to camps throughout the country.
In Italy, soldiers of the Jewish Brigade, which went into action against the Germans this month, will take part in seders and other ceremonies. In a Passover message to the Jews of the world, on behalf of the officers and men of the Brigade, Brigadier Ernest F. Benjamin declared: “I want the Jews everywhere to know that soldiers of my Brigade are firm and resolved in their struggle against the Germans. I know that they will, through their heroism and sacrifice, be a source of pride to the Jewish people. No soldier can have a better reason for standing firm under German fire than the soldiers of the Jewish Brigade.”
LIBERATED EUROPEAN JEWS PROVIDED WITH PASSOVER FOOD
Europe’s Jews, hundreds of thousands of whom will be observing their first free Passover in more than five years, have been provided with essential supplies by the Joint Distribution Committee. Thousands of pounds of matzohs and matzoh products were shipped to France, Italy, Belgium, Greece, Poland, Russia and Lithuania. In Rumania and other Balkan countries, where direct shipments from the United States were not possible, funds have been allotted for the parchase and baking of Passover foods. Refugees residing in Latin-American countries have also recived supplies.
Seder services for detained immigrants will be held at Ellis Island under the supervision of the HIAS. Special seder services have also been arranged for recently arrived refugees at the HIAS headquarters. These refugees are being provided with food and shelter pending their departure for other cities to join the relatives who sponsored their immigration to this country. For many this will be their first open celebration of Passover since Hitler cams to power.
In synagegues throughout the nation, Saturday, March 31, will be observed as United Palestine Appeal Sabbath, and congregations will be urged to contribute to the $35,300,000 goal which the UPA seeks to raise in the United States during 1945. The Jewish National Fund, in a Passover appeal to its councils throughout the nation,
urged the ecoperation of American Jewry in the JKF’s land acquisition program and appealed to the leaders of the United Nations to implement the pledges for a Jewish Commonwealth in palestine.
A passover gift of $300,000 was cabled today by Hadassah to the Jewish Agency for Palestine to provide for the maintenance and education of 1,138 Jewish refugee children who arrived in Palestine within the last four months, and who are being settled there under the auspices of the youth Aliyah.
In a proclamation dedicating this year’s Passover observances to “the liberation of mankind from the yoke of slavery,” the Synagogue Council of America declared today that, “The agreement of Yalta is a new declaration of independence and interdependence” and that “the events of the past year bring us the promise that this universal Passover is not far distant. The armies of liberation are on the march, The tyrants of our own time will be humbled as was Pharaoh of old and mankind will be freed from the fear of future aggression.”