Vilnius 2018

My annual visit to Vilnius Solomo Aleichemo ORT school
With director Misa Jakobas and teacher Teresa Segalienė
   
3D Printing  
With Hebrew teacher, Ruth

Shabbat
Yummy food in the canteen
With the student who participated in our first ORT project
Emanuelis Zingeris MP

The Jewish member of the Seimas, the Lithuanian Parliament 

Emanuelis Zingeris

Emanuelis Zingeris – Wikipedia

Emanuelis Zingeris (born 16 July 1957 in Kaunas, Lithuania) is a Lithuanian philologist, museum director, politician, signatory of the 1990 Act of the Re-Establishment of the State of Lithuania, currently serving as a Member of the Seimas (1990–2000 and since 2004), chairman of its foreign affairs committee (since 2010), Vice President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (since 2009) and President of the Parliamentary Forum of the Community of Democracies (since 2010).[1] A Lithuanian Jew, he has been director of the Vilna Gaon Jewish State Museum, honorary chairman of Lithuania’s Jewish community, and is Chairman of the International Commission for the Evaluation of the Crimes of the Nazi and Soviet Occupation Regimes in Lithuania. He is a founding signatory of the Prague Declaration on European Conscience and Communism, that proposed the establishment of the European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism.

Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emanuelis_Zingeris

Hirsh Glik

Hirsh Glik

Emanuelis Zingeris MP talks about Hirsh Glik

Source: youtu.be/QSNDsvpw1lo

Avraham Mapu

Avraham Mapu

Emanuelis Zingeris MP talks about Avraham Mapu

Source: youtu.be/r_TGbEO9lsQ

Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum
Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum
Samuel Bak

Source: www.jmuseum.lt/en/tolerance-center/

Samuel Bak  

   

SIGNS OF THE RUINED LITVAKS WORLD IN THE CREATIVE WORKS OF GERARDAS BADGONAVIČIUS
Jewish Life In Lithuania
Friends
With Simonas Gurevičius
With Saulius and Laura
With Arturas Taicas
  Jewish Vilnius    

The Choral Synagogue

Restoration of Geliu Synagogue progressing

From my 2017 visit:

The restoration of the Geliu synagogue Renovation of Synagogue on Geliu Gatve starts in Vilnius The Lithuanian Department of Cultural Heritage confirmed on July 21, 2015, the renovation of the syna…

Source: elirab.me/back-to-vilnius/

The Second Jewish Cemetery at Užupis

 

The first Jewish Cemetery at Šnipiškės

Jewish cemeteries of Vilnius 

Jewish cemeteries of Vilnius – Wikipedia

The Jewish cemeteries of Vinius are the three Jewish cemeteries of the Lithuanian Jews living in what is today Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, which was known to them for centuries as Vilna, the principal city of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Pale of Settlement of the Russian Empire. Two of the cemeteries were destroyed by the Soviet regime and the third is still active.

Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_cemeteries_of_Vilnius

The End of the Day

 

Navahrudak Jewish Cemetery and Holocaust Sites

NAVAHRUDAK: Grodno Belarus – International Jewish Cemetery Project

NAVAHRUDAK: Grodno [Novogrudok,Novaredok, Novogrudek, Novohorodok, Novradok, Nowogrudok, Nowogradek, Navharadak, Nawahradak, Nowogródek, Navaredok , Naugardukas , | belarus – International Jewish Cemetery Project

The IAJGS International Jewish Cemetery Project mission is to catalogue every Jewish burial site throughout the world. Every Jewish cemetery or burial site we know of is listed here by town or city, country, and geographic region is based on current locality designation.

Source: www.iajgsjewishcemeteryproject.org/belarus/navahrudak.html

Novogrudok, Belarus KehilaLink

Novogrudok, Belarus

Source: kehilalinks.jewishgen.org/navahrudak/Home.html

Holocaust Memorials

First Site

Second site  

Third site

  

From Wikipedia:

WWII

Soviet troops entered the city in 18 September 1939 and it was annexed into the Soviet Union via the Byelorussian SSR. The Polish inhabitants were exiled, mostly to Siberia and the Soviet Union, as prisoners. In the administrative division of the new territories, the city was briefly (from 2 November to 4 December) the centre of the Navahrudak Voblast. Afterwards the administrative centre moved to Baranavichy and name of voblast was renamed as Baranavichy Voblast, the city became the centre of the Navahrudak Raion (15 January 1940). On 22 June 1941 Nazi Germany invaded the USSR and Navahrudak was occupied on 4 July, following one of the more tragic events when the Red Army was surrounded in what’s known as the Novogrudok Cauldron. See Operation Barbarossa: Phase 1.

During the German occupation it became part of the Reichskommissariat Ostland territory. Partisan resistance immediately began. The Bielski partisans made of Jewish volunteers operated in the region. On 1 August 1943, Nazi troops shot down eleven nuns, the Martyrs of Nowogródek. The Red Army reoccupied the city almost exactly three years after its German occupation on 8 July 1944. During the war more than 45,000 people were killed in the city and in the surrounding area, and over 60% of housing was destroyed.

Navahrudak was an important Jewish center and shtetl. It was home to the Novardok yeshiva, led by Rabbi Yosef Yozel Horwitz, as well as the hometown of Rabbi Yechiel Michel Epstein and of the Harkavy Jewish family, including Yiddish lexicograph Alexander Harkavy. Before the war, the population was 20,000, of which about half were Jewish; Meyer Meyerovitz and Meyer Abovitz were the Rabbis there at that time. During a series of “actions” in 1941, the Germans killed all but 550 of the approximately 10,000 Jews. (The first mass murder of Navahrudak’s Jews occurred in December 1941.) Those not killed were sent into slave labor.[3]

Seduva Jewish Ceremonies

IMG_3874

I was privileged to attend the Seduva Jewish Cemetery Restoration and the two Holocaust Memorial ceremonies.

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This is what Sergey Kanovich, who led the project, said at the first Holocaust Memorial ceremony:

Most probably it was a sunny and bright morning of August 25th 1941. That was the last morning that Seduva Jews gazed at the Lithuanian sky and seen the sun. Supervised by German nazi officers local neighbours of Seduva Jews became their executioners here and in other places.

Seventy years, even more needed in order to become a witness of little miracle of the victory of the humanity. We are here because we will never forget our sisters and brothers. We will never forget nor the way how they lived neither the way they were brutally murdered. It is the duty of all of us – of Jews and Lithuanians alike – to remember and respect the memory in order to avoid the catastrophe which Lithuanian Jews went through would never come back. To remember and respect – it is our common duty. No matter where litvaks would live – in Australia or South Africa, Israel or Switzerland, Belgium or Canada – we always remember where we came from, we remember our forefathers and we will never forget or allow to forget them. Murderers could not kill our memory. We are back, because our memory is stronger than their bullets. And memory will always prevail.

We wish to thank everyone who made this project a reality

We wish to extend our gratituted to every worker who makes these stones become a memory.

We are here in order to remember the life and death of those innocent who have been murdered. God bless their memory. Yhie zichram Baruch.Amen

Today is a second day of Jewish Holiday Shavuot. Since there are more than ten Jewish men we are obliged to say Kaddish for those who perished. I kindly ask Mr. Simas Levinas to start the prayer..

The photos before and at the cemetery:

DSC_0693 DSC_0708

 

Video:

Rute Anu

The two Holocaust Memorials

DSC_0772 DSC_0762 DSC_0811 DSC_0816

Video:

Part of Ed Glasenberg’s Address

Video:

Kaddish – Sung By Rafailas Karpis

Kaddish – Continued

Lost-Shtetl

Lost_Shtetl Brochure

 

Šeduva

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Šeduva
Coat of arms of Šeduva
Coat of arms

Location of Šeduva

Coordinates: 55°46′0″N 23°45′0″ECoordinates55°46′0″N 23°45′0″E
Country  Lithuania
Ethnographic region Aukštaitija
County Šiauliai County
Municipality Radviliškis district municipality
Eldership Šeduva eldership
Capital of Šeduva eldership
First mentioned 1539
Granted city rights 1654
Population (2005)
 • Total 3,270
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)

Šeduva (About this sound pronunciation ) is a city in the Radviliškis district municipalityLithuania. It is located 18 km (11 mi) east of Radviliškis.

Shadova-Šeduva was an agricultural town dealing in cereals, flax and linseed, pigs and geese and horses, at the site of a royal estate and beside a road from Kaunas to Riga. The population from the fifteenth century was Catholic and Jewish. Until then, Lithuania had been the last pagan kingdom in Europe and allowed freedom of worship and toleration of Jews and other religions.[1] The first Catholic shrine of Šeduva, the Church of the Invention of the Holy Cross, was built and the parish founded between 1512 and 1529. The present brick church Cross was built in Šeduva in 1643 with a donation from Bishop Jerzy Tyszkiewicz of Vilnius. During the 18th century the bell tower was added to the structure, with further renovations and extensions in 1905. Baroque and renaissance architectural styles characterise both the exterior and interior of the church. It has a cruciform plan with an apse, low sacristy and five altars.

During the 15th century the region was redefined as the Voivodeship of Trakai and Vilnius. Later it became part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania until the Union of Lublin in 1569 created the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

The Seduva coat of arms were granted on June 25, 1654 by John II Casimir Vasa, King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania and at the same time the city was granted burger rights at the request of Maria Ludvika, Queen of Poland. She descended from the Princes of Gonzaga, from Mantua in Italy. The arms of the family showed a black eagle. The small breastshield shows the French fleur-de-lis, because the Gonzaga family was related to the French Royal family. The eagle was made white in reference to the white eagle of Poland.

Evil mill

1792 Stanislaw II August Poniatowski, the last royal proprietor of Šeduva, concluded an agreement with the town’s citizens, giving them rights to be excused from labour on the estate for a fee. In 1795, the year of a terrible fire in Seduva, Lithuania became part of Russia when Poland was partitioned. From 1798, Baron Theodore von Ropp did not acknowledge the rights of Seduva citizens and required of the citizens to perform labour in the town’s manor. The citizens petitioned for their rights to the Russian Senate. In 1812, the Senate passed the decision to recognise the former charters of Šeduva.

Between 1696 to1762, a Jesuit mission, connected with their college at Pasiause, was active in the town, operating a lower school with 96 pupils up until 1828. After an insurrection in 1863 (the January Uprising), all parish schools in Seduva were closed and replaced by public Russian language schools. In the same year a Russian Orthodox Church, designed by the architect Ustinas Golinevicius, was built and in 1866 a wooden Synagogue was added near the central market square.

The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact between Nazi Germany and Communist Russia in August 1939 and the German-Soviet Boundary and Friendship Treaty a month later placed Lithuania under Soviet control. By June 1940 the Soviets had set up a pro-Soviet government and stationed many Red Army troops in Lithuania as part of the Mutual Assistance Pact between the countries. President Antanas Smetona was forced to leave as 15 Red Army divisions came in.

The pro-Soviet puppet government was controlled by Vladimir Dekanozov and Justas Paleckis, and Lithuania was made part of the Soviet Union. A Sovietisation programme began immediately. Land, banks and large businesses were nationalised. All religious, cultural, and political organizations were abolished except the Communist party. 17000 people were deported to Siberia, where many would perish.

The German army invaded Lithuania on 22 June 1941, taking Shadova – Šeduva a few days later as part of Operation Barbarossa. At first the Lithuanian population considered the Nazis to be liberators saving them from the Red Army. The new pro-German Government organized a Lithuanian militia which then became the Nazi’s manpower for genocide. Five hundred years of Jewish life in Shadova – Šeduva ended in just two days of slaughter. Shadova’s Jews attempted to flee east to Russia but were badly treated by Lithuanian nationalists and most returned to their homes. The German forces entered Shadova – Šeduva on 25 June 1941 and were received with flowers by many locals. By the beginning of July, Jews had to wear the yellow Star of David. Jews who had participated in the Soviet rule were immediately arrested and executed. Jews were taken to dismantle the remnants of the munitions factory in Linkaičiai, and were then accused of stealing and executed. Others were forced into labour gangs. They were set to work cleaning the streets and at the warehouses of the rail station. All the work was guarded by armed Lithuanian militi . Next all the Jews of Shadova – Šeduva had to gather in the market place with no more than a small package each, and to hand over the keys to their houses to the police. Under guard. they were escorted at night to the village of Pavartyčiai, five kilometres north-west of Shadova – Šeduva, where they were crowded into two unfinished Soviet barracks surrounded with barbed wire. The Jews were ordered to hand over all their valuables and cash. Some were shot in the next few days.

On 25 August 1941 the remaining Jews of Shadova – Šeduva were loaded on trucks and taken to Liaudiškiai, ten kilometres south-west of the town where the Rollcommando Hamann of Einsatzcommando 3 and Lithuanian collaborators of the 3rd company of the Tautinio Darbo Apsaugos Batalionas were waiting for them. Over the coming two days the entire Jewish community of Shadova was shot and buried in two pre-prepared mass graves. One site was located 400 meters north of the Shadova – Šeduva road and a second 900 meters north west of the same road, close to a path in the forest. The local killers of their Jewish neighbours from Shadova – Šeduva were Ramnauskes, Valavičius, Jonas Tomkus and Klemensas Rožėnas. The lists of mass graves in the book The Popular Massacres of Lithuania, Part II, include the following: Liaudiskiai forest about 10 km southwest of Seduva, one site 400 meters north of the Seduva road and a second site 900 meters northwest of the same road, close to a path in the forest.[2] The Jäger report concludes that Einsatzcommando 3 registered the murder in Šeduva on the 25 and 26 August 1941 of 230 Jews, 275 Jewesses and 159 Jewish children, a total of 664 people.