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Sunday, November 27, 2005

Redeeming values of Hobart's Synagogue ::

Redeeming values of Hobart's Synagogue :: ABC Tasmania

Whilst only small, Hobart's Jewish community certainly has a colourful history...and an historic place to worship. The Hobart Synagogue is Australia's oldest, and it's having its 160th anniversary celebrations.

Rabbi John Levi resides in Melbourne but visits Hobart a couple of times a year to conduct services. He told Tim Cox that Hobart can lay claim to having Australia's oldest synagogue but not the oldest Jewish congregation...

Here's Rabbi John Levi
Runs 8:38 in Real Audio

So Australia's oldest synagogue doesn't have a rabbi but it does have a website: www.hobartsynagogue.org Details of the 160th anniversary celebrations are on their website but are described thus:

Friday 25 November - we start our weekend with a Reception at Government House, hosted by His Excellency the Governor of Tasmania (The Hon William Cox) and Mrs Cox. This will be followed by a Progressive Friday night service in Shul lead by Rabbi John Levi.

Saturday 26 November - Shabbat morning Progressive service will be lead by Rabbi Levi and in the afternoon there will be an NCJW afternoon tea ? our guest speaker will be the National President of NCJW, Mrs Robyn Lenn OAM.

Sunday 27 November - we will have a superb concert at the Shul arranged by Cantor Joseph Toltz from Temple Emanuel in Sydney and featuring his renowned choristers and local musicians.

Rabbi Levi describes the concert (which starts at 4pm) as a "re-enactment" of the original dedication service. And, in telling Tim Cox that the synagogue seats only 150, he explained that the seats were originally numbered to reflect the seniority and social standing of the congregation. Seat number 150 was for the most recalcitrant member...the man who founded The Mercury newspaper.


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