A new Jewish community center and synagogue was dedicated in an eastern Ukrainian industrial town.
The New JCC of Dneprodzerzhynsk dedicated Thursday includes the Beth Reuven Synagogue and Beit Baruch JCC, as well as a kosher restaurant, a soup kitchen, classrooms for study, and a recreation center for youth activities. Two Torah scrolls were carried into the synagogue in a special ceremony.
The JCC and synagogue were named, respectively, for the fathers of Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetzky, the chief rabbi of Dnepropetrovsk and region, and Gennady Bogolyubov, the chairman of the Jewish community of Dnepropetrovsk, the major sponsor of the project.
About 1,000 guests, including local officials and residents, and Jewish leaders from abroad, attended the opening and dedication. Among those on hand were Shlomo Amar, the chief Sephardic rabbi of Israel; Professor Shevach Weiss, the former chairman of Yad Vashem; and Jewish philanthropist Allen Green.
The Jewish population of Dneprodzerzhynsk is estimated at about 5,000. In addition to the new JCC and synagogue, the community boasts a modern mikvah and the Ohr Avner Jewish school for some 150 Jewish children.