Jews throughout the United States, England, Palestine and other democratic countries today held special D-Day services praying for the success of the Allied invasion of occupied Europe and the speedy liberation of the people enslaved by the Nazis.
Cables received by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency from London stated that Chief Rabbi Hertz ordered all synagogues in Britain to hold “invasion services” today. He also proclaimed the coming Sabbath as a day of prayers for a speedy Allied victory.
In Jerusalem prayers were delivered at the Wailing Wall. The Jewish population all over Palestine received the news of the invasion with excitement and hope that the day of liberation for European Jewry and for all Nazi-persecuted people is not distant. The Jewish Agency for Palestine and the Jewish National Council cabled messages to Prime Minister Churchill, expressing the joy of the Yishuv at the liberation of Rome by the Allied armies.
In New York, prayers were delivered in many synagogues, which culminated in the blowing of the shofar. In the Jewish-populated Brownsville section of New York a procession of elderly Jews wearing prayer shawls marched through the streets sounding the shofar.
The Synagogue Council of America issued an announcement that it had prepared a special prayer which was recited in all synagogues tonight during D-Day services. The Union of American Hebrew Congregations issued a call to its rabbis and members throughout the United States “to repair to their synagogues to pray for a swift victory not alone on the beachheads of France and throughout the continent of Europe and the islands of the Pacific, but for a victory of the spirit likewise, a victory that will this time make the world truly safe for the tiniest fragment of mankind, a world in which all men everywhere will dwell in security, in equity, in freedom in abiding peace.”
Many Jewish institutions closed their offices this afternoon to give the members of their staff an opportunity to participate in the open-air “D-Day services” arranged by Mayor LaGuardia at Madison Square. The Labavitcher Rebbe ordered all his followers and the students in all Lubavitcher orthodox schools throughout the United States to observe “D-Day” with special prayers and by reciting several chapters of the Psalms.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.