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August 25, 1967 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1967-08-25

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

16—Friday, August 25, 1967
THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Avrunin Reports
on Israel Survey

William Avrunin, executive di-
rector of the Jewish Welfare
Federation, who was a member
of the overseas delegation of the

Council of Jewish Federations and
Welfare Funds, reported on the
survey conducted by the group in
Israel:
"While the government of Is-
rael continues to carry the heavy
cost of mobilization,” he said, "and
the integration of newly reclaimed
areas, it looks to world Jewry for
help with the responsibilities for
immigration, absorbtion and the
associated educational and econ-
omic problems."
Avrunin reported that the group
had met with Israel's leading offi-
cials and that among the places
it visited was the settlement town
of Bet-Shemesh and the settle-
ment's Morris L. Schaver Compre-
hensive Secondary School. Mrs.

Emma Schaver, who financed the
establishment of this school in her
husband's memory, was in Israel
and joined the CJFWF delegation
at a Malben-JDC officials' meet-
ing.

Chief Rabb' B.
liomania's courageous
,

-"I

By GABRIEL LEVENSON

(Special Correspondent to the JTA)
(Copyright 1967, JTA Inc.)

EFORIE NORD, Romania—The

keystone in the arch of Romania's
100,000 Jews is the country's chief
rabbi, Moses Rosen, with whom I
had several interviews — the first
at his busy office in the two-story
building of the Federation of Jew-
ish Communitits in Dimitre Bako-
vitza Street in Bucharest, the suc-
ceeding one at
his hotel in this
resort town on
the Black Sea
coast and at the
Villa Mira near-
by.
Again and again
during our con-
versations, Rabbi
Rosen emphasiz-
ed the paradoxi-
Rabbi Rosen cal situation in
which Romanian Jewry finds it-
self. Enjoying conditions under
which they can be both "good Jews
and loyal Romanian citizens," he
said, maintaining vital communica-
tion with the Jewish communities
of the West, of Israel and of the
Soviet Union—nonetheless, the Ro-
manian Jewish community faces
eventual extinction as a dynamic
religious force, unless a new cadre
of young Jewish leadership can

Avrunin stated in his report:
"The delegation met to discuss be developed.
contributions and related projects
Half of Romania's 800,000 Jews
programs supported by American survived the Nazi holocaust; 300,-
contribution and related projects 000 of the remaining 400,000 have
with Dr. Israel Goldstein, Dr. migrated to Israel in the past 20
Raanon Weitz, head of the ab- years — "our gift to the Jewish
sorbtion and agricultural depart- State in the Arab-Israeli war," the
ment of the Jewish Agency, and rabbi says.
Dr. Israel Katz, dean of the Paul
lie added: "The irony is that
Baerwald School of Social Wel-
we were able to educate thou-
fare, Ilebrew University.
sands of young Jews in our tal-
"The recommendations of the
mud toras — with experienced
delegation will be reported to the
teachers — during the repressive
general assembly of CJFWF in years when Romania was under
November, in Cleveland. It was the influence of Stalinism. Now,
clear that among the major con-
when we have complete religious
cerns influencing its thinking
freedom here, there is only a
would be:
handful of students in our reli-

"1. The importance of continu-

gious schools — and no trained

Auschwitz, Poland, before World
War II — and died in the concen-
tration camp there, together with
all his congregation.
Rabbi Rosen was born in Moe-
nesti, northern Moldavia, when his
father was a rabbi there. The pres-
ent Rabbi Rosen occupied his first
pulpit, after his ordination, in the
same Moenesti synagogue — and
was educated at the University of
Bucharest, where he received a
doctor of laws degree, not so much
because he intended to practice
law, but because it was a means
of extending his cultural horizons.
He had been educated at home
by his father, before entering the
university — 10 to 12 hours a day,
he says, in Hebrew and Yiddish
literature, in talmudic and reli-
gious training — so that he needed
no formal preparation at a semi-
nary in order to gain ordination
as a rabbi. He was examined by
a panel of Bucharest's leading rab-
bis in 1938 and qualified to begin
his rabbinical career in Moldavia,
his native province.
By 1940, he had been called
to Bucharest, to serve as rabbi
at two synagogues, Rashid Daat
and Beth Eil—positions he held
for four years. Romania was then
occupied by the Nazis, although
direct authority in Bucharest was
maintained by the Iron Guard,
the Romanian fascist organiza-
tion.
During this period, the rabbi
was twice arrested by the Iron
Guard and sent to the wall for
execution. Through bureaucratic
"stupidity," he says, he managed
to escape death—although thou-
sands of Bucharest Jews were
killed in the pogrom of January,
1941, and he himself lived
"black,"
k," in an illegal, under-
ground situation, until the city
was liberated f rom fascist rule
by the uprising of Aug. 23, 1944.
One didn't have to be a "ho-
hem" to survive in Bucharest,
the Rabbi said, because the Ro-

It is recorded that, among hypo-
Premier Levi Eshkol and Jewish
Agency executive chairman A. L. condriacs, Samuel Jessup of Eng-
Pincus stressed the primacy of land has never had a modern
contributions of free dollars. The rival. His consumption of pills in
CJFWF leaders in turn praised 20 years was nearly a quarter of
the frankness of the Israeli leaders a million, with a peak annual total
who indicated they wanted not only of 51,590 in 1814. He is also re-
funds but also advice, including corded as having drunk 40,000
counsel on ways of raising the bottles of medicine until he died
levels of contributions within Is- at age 65.
rael itself. The mission examined
the use to which the emergency
* PUT YOUR MONEY WHERE
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activities of Jews organized in 75
cities throughout Romania. He is

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munity.
communication a n d interchange knowledge of Hebraism. He is a
The rabbi was named president
member of a rabbinical family
among the Jewish communities in
of the Federation of Jewish Corn-
which traces its ancestry back to I
all parts of the world.
munities,
the organization which
"6. The importance of assistance Rashi and whose members have directs the financial and cultural
been spiritual leaders of Jewish

communities in Poland, Russia and
Romania for hundreds of years.
A great-great-grandfather, Naph-
tal Hacohen, two centuries ago,
held the position Rabbi Rosen now
holds as chief rabbi of Romania.
Rabbi Rosen's father, Avrom Ar-
yeh Rosen, was a rabbi in Buchar-
est for 50 years, although born in
Poland, and was a renowned tal-
mudic scholar and the author of
many talmudic studies during his
lifetime. His father's older bro-
ther, Eli Rosen, was spiritual
leader of the Jewish community in

•irsu

saic," a bi-weekly newspaper with
Romanian, Yiddish and Hebrew
sections, whose 7,000 copies are
sold out immediately upon publi-
cation and become almost "black
market" items, the rabbi said, so
highly are they prized and so ex-
tensively circulated.

manian fascists were often "idiots,"
ing the interest of Jews all over people left to teach them."
and the Jews of Bucharest which
the world who contributed to the
Rabbi Rosen called for a "Peace
Israel Emergency Fund; in many Corps" of young American Jews, was under Romanian fascist rule,
instances as a first demonstration recent graduates of rabbinical suffered far less decimation than
the Jews in other parts of the
of Jewish affiliation.
seminaries, who could devote a
country which were directly under
"2. The necessity of maintain- year or two to religious work in
German control, or in Transylvania
ing the level of philanthropic par- the Romanian Jewish community.
which was governed by the Hun -
ticipation in view of Israel's con- "Language would be no barrier,"
garian fascists.
tinuing, and, in some area s, he said, "and we could provide for
In 1945, Rabbi Rosen was elect-
them completely during their stay
mounting needs.
ed rabbi of the Great Synagogue
"3. The potential for building here. Our great need is for a 'corps of Bucharest. In 1948, he succeed-
Jewish community life on a lasting of trained and devoted young men ed Dr. Alexander Safran as chief
basis beyond the meeting of emer- who could infuse the coming rabbi of the country; and, in 1949,
gency needs in many countries of generation of Jews with a power- he married Amalia Ruckenstein, a
the world and in strengthening ful religious and cultural identity." practising lawyer in Bucharest at
Leadership now is vested entire-
Jewish communal life in America.
the time, who gave up her own
"4. The responsibility for dom- ly in the person of Rabbi Rosen legal career in order to lend sup-
himself,
a stocky, vigorous man in
estic cultural programs with par-
port to her husband's evgr-increas-
his mid-fifties, with a command
ticular emphasis on youth.
ing responsibilities in the corn -
"5. The opportunities for greater of six languages and a profound

for the welfare and absorption
program for newcomers to Israel
while the government of Israel
addresses itself to the basic prob-
lems of security and economic
stability."
The mission studied the nature
and causes of Israel's joblessness
which has averaged more than
30,000 and hit especially younger
Israeli workers. The mission mem-
hers visited about 30 development j
towns with a population of 250,000
newcomers whose needs, the two
leaders said, comprised the bulk
of the problems for which Ameri-
can Jewish funds are being used.

IIP TOM TURN THE

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MORNING OR AFTERNOON SESSIONS
FIRST GRADE REGISTRATION CLOSED

(Waiting list only)

Enroll your child in Hillel Kindergarten now
to assure enrollment for first grade next year.

Transportation available

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