Brit Milah

“For you are a people holy to the LORD your G-d. The LORD your G-d has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession.” (Deuteronomy 7:6) Although the concept of the Brit Milah is seen as a commandment from the Almighty, physicians and […]


“… prayer can be held in virtually any location… But Jewish married life… is possible only where there is accessibility to a mikvah… the touchstone of Jewish life and the portal to a Jewish future….” (R. Slonim, “The Jewish Woman”) Ancient Mikvahs (ritual baths) mark the history of Jewish life around the world. They existed even […]

Cemeteries & Jewish burial

“Lord, let me know my end, and what is the measure of my days, that I may know how frail I am!” (Psalms 39:5) Over recent decades, many young Jews have chosen to emigrate from the countries of the formerSoviet Union, leaving behind older relatives who have decided to remain in the lands of their […]


“The purpose of marriage is growth… and the more challenging one’s marriage – the greater the possibilities of growth!” (Rabbi Zelig Pliskin) Every Jewish wedding in the formerSoviet Unionis a milestone for the local community. Not very long ago, only ten weddings a year were performed inUkraine’s third largest city before a rabbi and under […]


“Jewish dietary laws prescribe not merely a diet for the body but a diet for the soul… a diet to maintain one’s spiritual well-being…” (Rabbi Hayim Halevy Donin, ‘To Be a Jew’) Distributing specialty food items is no easy task in the best of times. The logistics behind providing kosher food to a growingly observant […]


“How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, and thy tabernacles, O Israel!” (Numbers 24:5 KJV) In the old communities of the Russian Empire, the synagogue was the traditional center of Jewish life. Unfortunately, under communist rule, they suffered the fate of many other places of worship – falling into disrepair or else confiscated by the […]

Bar & Bat Mitzvah

“The Torah is a tree of life for all who grasp it.” (Proverbs 3:18) Coming of age…. Until not long ago, one could be imprisoned for simply wearing tefillin. Today, a Bar/Bat Mitzvah in the Former Soviet Union is an opportunity, not only for a budding youth to celebrate, but also for an entire family […]


Holidays – a gateway to Judaism… Celebration of Jewish holidays unites Jews around the world. For the millions who grew up without the opportunity to rejoice as a community, the revival of tradition signifies the victory of tenacity over tyranny – both for their people and for themselves. Whether it’s Purim with our ‘Mishloach Manot’ […]

JLI – Innovative Torah classes

A Soul-Searching Journey for Every Jew Towards a Meaningful Life is one out of the many fascinating study courses being launched throughout the Former Soviet Union in cooperation with the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute (JLI). Enjoying huge success around the world, the JLI programs have been adapted and translated into Russian, thanks to the generous support […]

Religious services

“There is a famous story in which the Kaiser asks Bismarck, ‘Can you prove the existence of God?’ Bismarck replies, ‘The Jews, your majesty. The Jews.’” For growing numbers of Jews throughout the Former Soviet Union, the joy of rediscovering Judaism and the richness and wisdom of the Torah is a revelation; for many others, […]