VIENNA CONGREGATION OFFERS TO HELP SLOVAKIANS
ESTABLISH PROGRESSIVE COMMUNITY
Leaders of Congregation Or Chadasch in Vienna have
met with liberal-minded members of the Bratislava Jewish community, 50
miles to the east in Slovakia, who expressed interest in establishing a
Progressive congregation of their own. The meeting followed a visit to
Bratislava by London-based Rabbi Andrew Goldstein, who plans to return
to Slovakia during Purim. The two communities will begin holding joint
community activities, including a Pesach Seder. In the meantime, members
of the Vienna congregation will investigate ways to assist the
Bratislavans in setting up a congregation.
Or Chadasch - Wien
MUNICH'S HOMOLKA TO HEAD GERMAN GREENPEACE
Walter Homolka, associate rabbi of Munich's
Congregation Beth Shalom and deputy chairman of the Union of Progressive
Jews in German-speaking Europe, is to become executive director of
Greenpeace in Germany starting March 1. Homolka, who has served Beth
Shalom in a volunteer capacity, was chief of staff to the president and
CEO of the Bertelsmann publishing concern. "Justice and the preservation
of creation have always been priority issues in my life," says Rabbi
Homolka, who views working with Greenpeace as "a privilege."
Greenpeace/Germany has a staff of 120 and an annual
budget of DM 66.9 million raised from half a million local supporters.
In assuming his new position, Homolka will be leaving Munich for the
state of Lower Saxony, where he will serve as spiritual leader for a
number of communities.
Beth Shalom - München
MACHZOR WITH PLAUT COMMENTARY TO BE PUBLISHED
The Union of American Hebrew Congregations has
authorized the translation of the Plaut Torah Commentary into German.
The book will be published by Guetersloher Verlagshaus in fall, 1998.
Annette Boeckler, translator of the prayerbook of
the Union of Progressive Jews in Germany, Austria and Switzerland,
"Seder ha-Tefilot," will be project manager. Rabbi W. Gunther Plaut will
himself participate in the process of reworking and adapting the
commentary, which shall become the backbone of contemporary torah study
in German-speaking Progressive congregations. Knesebeck is set to
publish the new Hebrew-German Union Haggadah in spring, 1998. Edited and
with a commentary by Rabbi Dr. Michael Shire, and translated by Annette
Boeckler, it will include illuminations from medieval haggadot from the
collection of the British Library.
Thus, by end of 1998, all three pillars of German
congregational life - a mahzor with modern translation and commentary,
the liturgy and the Pesach Haggadah - will be in place.