Citadel synagogue in Timișoara restored to the Jewish community and rededicated

After almost 30 years, the Citadel synagogue of Timișoara was restored to the Jewish community and rededicated.

There are three synagogues in the western Romanian city, but only one was functional. Torah scrolls were returned to the Ark, a mezuzah was placed at the entrance, and a Shofar sounded.

For Luciana Friedmann, president of the 600-member Jewish community of Timișoara, this is a dream come true. “In the last five years we felt it was very important to give it back to the community, to find resources to renovate it. With G*d’s help resources were found, both from the Romanian Government, from the Timișoara City Hall and from the Federation of Jewish Communities in Romania”, she added.

The Citadel synagogue, located on Marasesti Street was built in 1865, according to the plans of Viennese architect Carl Schuman, was re-inaugurated in 1872, in the presence of Emperor Franz Joseph, and in the 2000s, until its closure, was a venue for events and concerts.

The synagogue is one of the most important historical monuments in Timișoara. It was built by the Neolog community of Timișoara, which was the most numerous of the Jewish communities in the city. It operated until 1985, and was used afterwards for concerts and cultural events. It closed in 2018 to undergo partial restoration work.

The event to reopen the synagogue was attended by local and county authorities, guests from Bucharest and abroad, representatives of the city’s religious groups and two rabbis. Among those who honoured the event were Marcel Ciolacu, President of the Chamber of Deputies, Vasile Dâncu, Minister of National Defence, Marius Budăi, Minister of Labour, Silviu Vexler, President of the Federation of Jewish Communities in Romania and Katrin Goring – Eckhardt, Vice-President of the German Parliament.

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