Before the war Jews constituted 10% of Poland`s population, about 3.5 million, the largest in Europe. Nazi Germans exterminated most of them, only 300 thousand Jews survived. But mass emigration, especially after infamous Kielce pogrom of 1946 and expulsion of Jews by crazed communist dictator in 1968 reduced this number to a few thousand Jews residing in Poland today.
This thread is to present Jewish presence in Poland.
There is a synagogue in Szydłów, built in 16 century, one of the oldest in Poland, with defence structure. Jewish tourists visit this place, say prayers and sing in it. It is a museum and gallery today.
Szyd³ów Synagogue was a Orthodox Judaism synagogue in Szyd³ów, Poland. It was built in 1534-1564. The synagogue was devastated by Nazis during World War II. During the war it served as a weapons and food magazine. After the war it briefly served as a village cinema to be eventually abandoned. Building was renovated in 1978 and converted to a museum.
I heard that the Jewish community is growing since some Polish Catholics found out that they are jews since their parents hid their identity during communism for their own safety. They pretended to be Roman Catholics, even raising their kids that way!
Bonobo, How many sinagogues are there in Poland today? I heard that the Jewish community is growing since some Polish Catholics found out that they are jews since their parents hid their identity during communism for their own safety. They pretended to be Roman Catholics, even raising their kids that way! Pieter
Those synagogues which hadn`t been destroyed by the German occupant during WW2 were gradually turned into museums or other facilities in communist times. There are 11 working synagogues in Poland today. pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portal:Synagogi
As for secret identity of Jewish people who always believed they were Polish, yes, it is true. However, we need to clarify: the people who discover they have Jewish origin were hid by Poles during WW2 to avoid the fate of the rest of Holocaust victims. After the war, they were brought up as Catholics in Polish families.
I love old Jewish cemeteries, Roman-Catholic, Protestant and Jewish cemeteries. They tell something about the past of a village, town or coty, because they give information about the people who lived and worked and some of them studied there. I also like the design and sometimes architecture of graves, grave yards, the fences of grave yards and the trees which grow well on human remains.
Jewish graves often have beautiful grave stones which look like the façades of buildings with their classist shapes and hebrew scriptures or like the two stone tablets with the Ten Commandments God gave to Moses on Mount Sinai.
Jewish cemetery in Rădăuţi in Northern-Rumania.
The jewish cemetery of Prague (I have been there)
Jewish section of the large Arnhem city cemetry, Moscova. (Which consists Roman-Catholic, Protestant, secular and jewish graves of Arnhem people)