Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Synagogue restored in Beirut

This is a bit out of the 'hood, but Haaretz runs a nice piece about the restoration of the Maghen Abraham Synagogue synagogue in downtown Beirut....

Renovations on the ruined synagogue, which was built in 1925, began in 2009
after an agreement between various religious denominations and permission from the Lebanese government, planning authorities and even Hezbollah. The project received the green light after political officials and community leaders became convinced it could show that Lebanon is an open country, tolerant of many faiths including Judaism. [...]

Renovations have included mending the gaping hole in the Moroccan-style synagogue's roof and repairing the chandeliers that once hung from it. The Torah ark and prayer benches will also be refurbished to their former states, having been seriously damaged in fighting between Muslim and Christian forces during the 1975-1990 Lebanese civil war.

Several dozen Jews still living in Lebanon will fund the project to the tune of $200,000, along with others in the Diaspora. The project has also received a $150,000 grant from Solidere, a construction firm tasked with rebuilding central Beirut from the destruction of the civil war. The company is privately owned by the family of Rafik Hariri, the former prime minister assassinated in 2005.
Read full story by clicking RIGHT HERE

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