RIO DE JANEIRO (JTA) — A Jewish cultural center opened in Brazil.
Several governmental officials attended the recent opening of the Midrash Cultural Center in Rio de Janeiro’s upscale Leblon neighborhood.
The center, which boasts a plush facade featuring Hebrew letters, will feature lectures, courses, debates, exhibits, concerts on Jewish culture, history, literature, poetry and philosophy.
"I hope people from different religions, and also those with no religion, can get more familiar with the Jewish culture here," said Sergio Cabral, Rio de Janeiro’s
state governor. "It would be great if students from our public schools could attend."
"It is a place to promote tolerance and pluralism," said Rabbi Nilton Bonder, the center’s coordinator and spiritual leader of a Conservative synagogue. "We have built a study house of the 21st century that will go beyond the literal by promoting the capability of looking at new perspectives."
Also attending the opening was Rio De Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes, Brazil’s Environment Minister Carlos Minc, and other Jewish and non-Jewish officials and artists.