The Jewish community of Irkutsk, Russia, gathered this last Tuesday to celebrate 135 years since the foundation of its Great Synagogue. The synagogue that was built at the end of the 19th century unified the community that until then had been divided between merchants and soldiers.
Since then the Synagogue has suffered three fires, survived both the Czarist and Soviet regimes, and today 135 years later, it still the unites the Jewish people of Irkutsk, a small city in the heart of Siberia.
The synagogue not only serves as a prayer house, but also as a community center for the young and old. Together with the Synagogue, Rabbi Aharon Wagner and his family celebrated their 10 years in Irkutsk which have been devoted to leading and developing the community.
The event was attended by nearly 400 people, community members, guests, dignitaries and rabbis. [nggallery id=249]