Saved from the fires of Ruzhan

You may also like...

3 Responses

  1. L. Oberstein says:

    Many years ago, like maybe 20 or more, I used to walk to my shul in Druid Hill Park through a neighborhood called Lower Park Heights. One Shabbos, I noticed pages of siddurim or other holy writings on the sidewalk. They were most probably in a basement and the present tenants, African Americans, were throwing them away as having no value.
    There was nothing I could do as it was shabbos and outside the eruv.
    Here is the question. Is there a difference between neighborhoods that are empty of Jews in the USA and towns in Europe that once had a Jewish population? Another way of asking it, why do we visit Eastern Europe and spend money helping the Poles and the Ukrainians by viewing the places where they killed us? Rabbi Berel Wein has expressed this as the reason he does not personally lead tours to those countries. Should I go back to Tiktin where my father was born or Polnoa where my mother was born. Both were once vibrant centers of Jewish life, one Litvish, one chassidish. Today they are Judenrein.

  2. Raymond says:

    If I remember correctly, my father, who was from Ruzhan, Poland, was first cousins with Rabbi Nachman Bulman’s mother. That makes me directly related to Toby Katz. And, according to a family tradition on my mother’s side, I am also a direct descendant of the Holy Ba’al Shem Tov.

    Okay, maybe I am showing off a bit here, but that is only because I will probably never gain such notoriety based on my own merits.

  3. Charles B. Hall says:

    L. Oberstein makes a great point. There were more Jews in the Bronx in the 1940s than there ever were in any European city. That community is now almost completely gone, with something like three hundred synagogues now destroyed or put to other uses. For example, the Bronx Museum of the Arts started out as a Young Israel synagogue; I know people who were members there. Even more former synagogues are now churches. I pass these buildings on a regular basis. The only strong Jewish area left in the Bronx is my neighborhood of Riverdale which was didn’t get an Orthodox synagogue until the 1950s.

Pin It on Pinterest