Menu JTA Search

Ezra Nathan RSS


  • Hillel offers seders in Russia

    Hillel and Jewish philanthropies have joined to teach Russian Jews how to celebrate Pesach; now those young Russians can do it for themselves.

  • Reform Judaism struggles in Siberian city

    If the World Union for Progressive Judaism holds up the Siberian city of Tuymen as its model community in Russia, then Omsk represents a failure for the Reform group. While the WUPJ established a foothold in Omsk in 1991, Jewish leaders in the city later

  • Russia’s Jewish republic renewed

    In the sleepy Birobidzhan republic, superficial trappings of Jewish life – signs in Yiddish and a menorah dominating a town square – are more common than Jewish spirit in what was, in Soviet times, a “Jewish Autonomous Region.” However, local Jewish leade

  • How to revive Judaism in a closed city?

    In the once-proseperous “closed nuclear city” of Krasnoyarsk, Jewish life stagnates as residents are seldom permitted to travel. Activists are struggling to help the city’s Jewish community, despite government interference.

  • From the Bronx to Siberia

    In 1932, as waves of Russian Jews left in pursuit of the American dream, Jacob Gurevitch and his parents boarded a boat in the Bronx headed in the opposite direction. They were pioneers in a different sort of Promised Land: a Jewish homeland in Russia’s F

  • A city’s leader may leave for Israel

    Vladimir Yankelevitch, who has helped make Vladivostok’s Jewish community into one of Russia’s most independent, is worn down by his efforts and may leave this exotic port along the Chinese border for Israel. The city’s Jews dread the thought of life with

  • In closed city, Jews still afraid

    Closed nuclear cities like Ozersk were a Soviet state secret and didn’t even appear on maps until the 1990s. Many of Ozersk’s Jews remain so scarred by Soviet-era fear that they continue to shun aid offered by world Jewry.

  • Science center to get Jewish renewal

    In the Siberian research city of Akademgorodox, science has long been the unofficial religion. Now, Jewish life is beginning to find a foothold, and an ambitious rabbi plans to boost it further by building a community center to give the Jewish scene a hub

  • Jews thrive in city´s leadership positions

    Yekaterinburg, Russia’s third largest city, has a small Jewish community, but it includes a surprisingly large number of the city’s most prominent leaders. Though many of these luminaries are thoroughly assimilated, they have helped make some of the city

  • A deaf man spreads God’s word

    Religious doors were pried open in western Russia as soon as the curtain came down on communism, but Jewish life in a remote slice of Siberia is waking up only now thanks to Mark Kravetzs, an 80-year-old who lost his home, family and hearing, but never hi