JERUSALEM (Sep. 20)
Rabbis throughout Israel, led by Chief Rabbi Isaac Halevi Herzog, yesterday devoted sermons to the American Jewish Tercentenary. At a service in Jeshurin Synagogue here, attended by Israel President Itzhak Ben Zvi, Dr. Herzog pronounced a benediction on all the people of the United States.
In his sermon, Dr. Herzog noted that this was an occasion for the entire House of Israel, not just American Jewry, to celebrate. He reminded American Jews that while they continue their loyal devotion to their country they should also be devoted to Israel’s revival as the “miracle of this generation which is a manifestation of part of God’s plan in history.”
He recalled the contributions of the United States to the world, asserting that but for America there would be no Jewish State today. He recalled too the contributions of American Jewry’s efforts in behalf of needy Jews of the world through such organizations as the Joint Distribution Committee, and its work for Israel. He expressed the hope that large numbers of Jews from the United States would settle in Israel.
Reviewing briefly the history of the United States, Rabbi Herzog observed that no one could have prophesied, when the Mayflower sailed, that a new chapter was being opened not only in world history but also in the history of the Jewish people. “There were no Jews on that boat,” he said. “But there were on it men and women whom the Talmudic sages would have described as the pious of the gentile nations, men and women who carried with them into the new country ideals of the Hebrew prophets and the principles of the righteous law of Moses.”