BERCHTESGADEN, GERMANY (Feb. 22)
More than 400 Jewish GI’s and officers, from U. S. Army and Air Force units throughout Europe, gathered in this favorite town of Hitler’s for two four-day “Torah Convocations” devoted to a better understanding of Judaism. The convocations were held in the former hunting lodge of top Nazi Hermann Goering.
This building was put at the disposal of chaplains of all denominations as a “religious retreat house” for servicemen by the U. S. Army. The two Jewish retreats were the 100th and 101st to be held in this scenic mountain spot. They had been arranged by Rabbi Oscar M. Lifshutz, who is the Jewish chaplain for the Munich area. Chaplain Lifshutz served as retreat master and, together with Chaplains Edward Ellenbogen and Harry Z. Schreiner made up the “faculty”.
Prayer services alternated with an Israeli film festival, lectures with religious workshops on the forthcoming Passover festival, a family clinic for married personnel with lectures on Jewish ethics or “customs and ceremonies.” The former kitchens of the gluttonous Nazi Field Marshal adhered to strict kashruth during the two retreats.