Brazil’s first female rabbi took up her post at Rio de Janeiro’s largest synagogue. During last Friday’s Shabbat-evening services, Paraguayan-born Sandra Kochmann, 31, a Conservative rabbi, joined Reform Rabbi Sergio Margulies at the helm of the 1,000-family Associacao Religiosa Isrealita, in Rio de Janeiro. Some 900 people attended the ceremony at the synagogue, which was founded by German immigrants in 1943. In a mixture of Spanish and Portuguese, Kochmann delivered her inaugural address while wearing a Moroccan-style yarmulke and tallit. “We need to prepare people for what is new,” she said, calling her appointment a personal challenge and a challenge for Brazilian Jewry.
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.