The Big Tent Judaism Coalition is up and running online.
The coalition, which was announced by the Jewish Outreach Institute at its October conference, is an online community of organizations committed to welcoming the unaffiliated, including interfaith families and non-Jews interested in Judaism.
It also acts as a guide for those individuals, helping them to find local Jewish groups open to them. The coalition, at www.bigtentjudaism.org, includes a running list of synagogues, Jewish community centers and other Jewish communal institutions that have signed on to the project; an “Ask the Rabbiâ€ section; and other resources for those seeking a way into the Jewish community.
A new synagogue was dedicated in a German town nearly 70 years after Nazis destroyed its former one.
The applause for the growth of Germany’s Jewish community was tempered, however, by warnings about new forms of anti-Semitism in Europe.
The $10 million synagogue in the center of Bochum, located in the Ruhr Valley, was financed by the Jewish community, the state of North-Rhine Westphalia and the German gvernment.
Among the guests at the recent dedication ceremony for the cube-shaped building were the president of the Bundestag, Norbert Lammert; the president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Charlotte Knobloch; and state governor J??rgen R??ttgers.
R??ttgers warned against complacency in the face of “anti-Semitism in new garb.” He said Germany must not allow “adherents of totalitarian, inhumane ideologies to destroy” Germany’s cosmopolitan, multicultural identity.
Members of the Jewish community brought Torah scrolls from the location of the former synagogue to the new building. The original synagogue, destroyed during Kristallnacht on Nov. 9, 1938, was not rebuilt.
According to the Tagesschau online news site, Bochum’s Jewish community now has 1,200 members, as many as it had before the Nazi period.