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Synagogue

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The only Synagogue that survived in Riga, all the others were destroyed.

A story is telling that this Synagogue survived thanks to a Priest and a Church that is located not far from it. The priest applied to the Nazi's not to burn the Synagogue since it might also have burnt the church that is next to it, and the Nazi's accepted it and did not burn it.

And this is the story that made it possible for this only synagogue to survive in Riga until today...

synagogue

The Rabbi of this synagogue and the Jewish Orthodox community in Riga is Mr. Mordechai Glazman and his assistant is Rabbi Shneur Zalman Kot.

It's possible to visit and see the synagogue from inside (but not at prayer times)

Entrance fee is 2 LVL.

About synagogues:

Synagogues are the spiritual central of Jewish people, unlike Churches that are big and fancy and make people who visit them feel respect and small, the Synagogues are mostly small and modest.

Another explanation to the modesty of the structure of synagogues is that Jewish people were scattered over many countries as a minority and could not show fanciness since other people would get upset and destroy them.

The Synagogue that survived in Riga is not a typical Synagogue, it's actually an impressive art-nouveau style building that was even renovated not long ago.

About different streams in Judaism:

The Orthodox is the original stream, it is old fashioned and believe in nothing else but what is written in the bible (in its original language that is Hebrew).

There are 613 commandments that are given in the bible and according to them a Jewish person must live.

In the history of Judaism there are many famous Rabbis, One of them is Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson also known as the Lubavitcher Rebbe. (in Hebrew: 'הרב מלובביץ)

Rabbi Mordechai Glazman from the Synagogue in Riga was personally sent to Riga by the Lubavitcher Rebbe and this was approximately 30 years ago.

When I asked him if he can remember the Lubavitcher Rebbe he answered to me with a question: "Can you remember your own mother and father?"

The Protestant is the new stream of Judaism, it believe in changes in the laws of Judaism that would fit to the current time and place.

The Orthodox Jews do not accept the Protestants, they claim that the protestants invented something new that is not Judaism, they also explain that all through history every Jewish person who slided from the original stream and the exact rules of the bible did not manage to survive until today, not that he got killed, he simply lost his way and went away from Judaism.


Update October 11'th 2013:

The first thing that you'll notice if you visit the synagogue is the small booth of police that is located in the entrence to the yard.

Why is there police that is guarding the synagogue?

Probably it's because this synagugue was a target for two bombing attemts: One was at 1995 and the other on 1998.

More Information is here: 1998 Riga bombing.

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