Tempel Synagogue, Krakow

Tempel Synagogue, Krakow

The latest and greatest Jewish news from around the globe

  • Poland

All non-Jews dislike Jews, according to Krakow’s new chief rabbi, in what probably amounts to a bad start. The sentiments of the incoming Rabbi Eliezer Gurary were condemned by the Polish rabbinical association and Jewish community, which said his statement ‘painted all non-Jews as anti-Semites’.

  • Brazil

An Argentinian couple have organised the first of 14 Jewish events across Brazil for international visitors to the country during the World Cup. Mariano Schlez and his wife have planned Shabbat evening prayers, beach games, Saturday night Havdalah services, pick-up games and Jewish heritage tours.

  • Vatican

Pope Francis has defended the wartime record of Pope Pius XII, saying he was a ‘great defender of Jews’. In an interview, Francis said Pius hid many Jews in convents and even in his own house, with 42 Jewish babies born there, but Jewish groups think he could have done far more to speak out.

  • Russia

Thousands of people have attended Moscow’s first Festival of Judaism, in an event that doubled up as a 50th birthday party for Russian Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar. The bash, held at the city’s Jewish Museum, featured presentations about aspects of the Jewish faith, including tefillin, kashrut and the Hebrew Bible.

  • Spain

One of Spain’s largest Jewish cemeteries is making the site accessible to disabled people. The 1,000-year old Lucena necropolis in Cordoba will benefit from the construction of wooden pathways suspended over the graves in a grid. Architects said they planned it ‘with consideration to the dignity of the dead’.

  • Hungary

A neo-Nazi Hungarian politician has undergone a dramatic conversion since being dumped by his party after discovering his Jewish roots. Csanad Szegedi was a rising star of the far-right and ranted against Jews ‘buying up Budapest,’ but now goes to synagogue, eats kosher and has adopted the Hebrew name Dovid.